Thursday, October 22, 2020

What really happened to Tso Vilakazi?

The name Benedict ‘Tso’ Vilakazi needs no introduction to football fans here that follow South Africa Premier League every week. He used to be the darling of many Orlando Pirates fans almost a decade ago when he used to be one of the most exciting midfielders in South African football.

After a short stint in Denmark he returned home to join Mamelodi Sundowns before ending his top flight career at Mpumalanga Black Aces.

Since leaving Black Leopards two years ago, most Botswana fans knew little about his whereabouts until he resurfaced here in June last year to join Notwane FC.

His move was the most publicised and created a lot of excitement amongst Notwane fans as they believed that his arrival would attract even the forgotten fans. He joined the club at the same time with former Sundowns attacking midfielder Manqoba ‘Shakes’ Ngwenya.

After a couple of games at Notwane, reports started filtering through that both Vilakazi and Ngwenya were not happy at the club due to unpaid salaries.

Botswana Premier League (BPL) cleared them in November to join the club of their choices. Ngwenya joined Township Rollers while Vilakazi moved the opposite direction to the ambitious BMC Football Club.

At the time when BMC brought him on board, it was his experience which was expected to drive the club forward.

Hardly three months at Ezinkomo, BMC management announced in the past week that they have taken a decision to terminate the contract of the former Pirates’ wonderkid.

The decision shocked a lot of football fans as to what could have let to sudden change of heart by BMC management. BMC manager Nelson Radijeng said that they terminated the contract after a recommendation from the technical team.

“The technical team felt that he was not offering the team what they expected from him. We expect foreigners to offer us something which the local players can’t unfortunately in Vilakazi’s case he did not. It will be unrealistic for us to keep him in the team when he is getting a lot of money,” said Radijeng.

He pointed out that as the management they sign and release players based on the recommendations from the coaching team. In Vilakazi’s space, BMC were expected to conclude a deal with Zimbabwean striker Nqobile Mpala. The Zimbabwean once played for CAPS United and Highlanders in his home country.

Radijeng further pointed out that their intention is do well in the remaining league fixtures. BMC had a sloppy start to the campaign which saw them dropping points due to their ownership case which was held before the courts of law.

“It has been a bumpy campaign for us but with the signing we’ve made I want to believe that we can finish inside the top eight bracket. At the end of the season we’ll sit down and start planning for the upcoming campaign,” said Radijeng.

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