Influential players are not easily replaced and teams that lose them normally take a bit of time to recuperate.
Currently in the Premier soccer league, Township Rollers and Mochudi Center Chiefs have lost some of their priced assets to South African teams and it remains to be seen how their replacements will fare this coming season. Rollers lost top striker Terrence Mandaza to South African Premier League side, Platinum Stars, while Centre Chiefs lost their midfield dynamo, Dirang Moloi to South African Premier League green horns, Vasco Da Gama. Mandaza’s departure from Rollers is a blessing for the team mainly because it is a financial boost since it is reported that he went for a record P1.2 million while Moloi has signed for an undisclosed amount.
Although Centre Chiefs did not achieve much with Moloi, they finished as runners up for two consecutive seasons.
Moloi played a pivotal role in the middle where his pinpoint crosses and dribbling wizardry helped his team score crucial goals.
Mandaza, on the other hand, was the pillar of strength upfront as he helped Rollers win the double this season and he is one of the best ever strikers on the local scene. Rollers won both the league and Coca-Cola Championships and he scored a record 43 goals in both competitions.
The question now is whether the duo will be easily replaced?
In 1996, Rollers lost their lethal striker, Joseph Chikoti to Wits University and his replacement was never found and the team ended up going through a rough patch.
Currently, there has not been news regarding the new acquisitions to replace Mandaza and the question is whether the team would once again go back to the years of struggle like what happened after Chikoti left.
Chiefs woes, on the other hand, might be worsened by the fact that they have already lost one of their influential midfielders, Sekhana Koko, to Rollers.
Centre Chiefs spokesperson, Clifford Mogomotsi, conceded to Sunday Standard that this has been their silent transfer time. He said they have not yet made any major signings but instead promoted a few players from their development side.
“Currently, nothing much happened on our side. We have not really made in-roads in signing the players who will replace the likes of Moloi. But what I can say is that we have promoted a few enterprising players from our youth structures and hope they will endure Premier League pressure and eventually bring the results to the team,” said Mogomotsi.
It now remains to be seen who the two clubs will bring into their fold because the elapse of the transfer window is this coming week.