Knowledge Musona stays in Europe

By Petros Kausiyo
Zimbabwe’s talismanic forward Knowledge Musona will not be having another dance with the South African Premiership this season after Kaizer Chiefs and TSG Hoffenheim 1899 failed to agree to a new deal for the release of the player yesterday.

Musona, who is contracted to German Bundesliga side Hoffenheim, was on a season’s loan to Chiefs for the 2013-2014 term and Amakhosi had been hoping to lure the striker back for another loan spell.

Chiefs initially sold Musona to the European side in 2011.

The future of the former Aces Youth Academy forward had been a subject of speculation in the last few months while Musona was also battling to overcome a long term ankle injury.

The striker’s agent, Mike Makaab of Prosport International, confirmed in a statement to the media yesterday and indicated that the parties had failed to reach an agreement.
Knowledge Musona
“It is important for all parties involved that we put an end to the speculation surrounding the possible transfer of Knowledge Musona from Hoffenheim to Kaizer Chiefs.
“After a lengthy period of negotiation, we regret that we were unable to reach an agreement for Knowledge to re-join Chiefs.

“THE MAJOR STUMBLING BLOCK IS THAT THE PLAYER WAS NOT PREPARED TO SIGN AN AGREEMENT FOR LONGER THAN THE CURRENT SEASON (ONE-YEAR LOAN AGREEMENT), AS IT IS HIS DESIRE TO PURSUE HIS CAREER IN EUROPE.

“Understandably, this short-term arrangement was not acceptable to Chiefs. On behalf of Knowledge, he has asked me to convey his sincere thanks to Chiefs and their supporters for the wonderful support that he has received from them,” Makaab said.

Chiefs football manager Bobby Motaung also explained his club’s side of the story.

“After a long protracted negotiation with Hoffenheim for Knowledge Musona to come back to Kaizer Chiefs on loan for another season, we’d like to announce that the negotiations were not successful due to time constraints.

“We will, however, review the negotiations for the next window period,’’ Motaung said.

The Germans also issued brief statement on the matter.

“It is unfortunate that we weren’t able to conclude a deal during this transfer window, but we look forward to continuing our close relationship with Kaizer Chiefs.”

Musona had appeared definite for a return to Chiefs — despite the fact that there is also very strong interest from another big club in the South African Premiership – but the striker had reportedly told those close to him that his desire was to stay in Europe.

Chiefs are understood to have indicated to Hoffenheim, they would provide the best environment for the player to return from injury considering that he last played a competitive match in April following an ankle problem he initially picked up at the end of March in a CAF Champions League match against Congolese side AS Vita.

However, just as much as Hoffenheim are keen on cashing in on Musona’s sale and want to permanently offload him, they also want the 24-year-old Warriors chief striker to head out to a destination of his choice — which at the moment remains Europe.


If it is another loan move then it is better off for Hoffenheim to move him to another club on the same continent for the sake of the player’s progress.

Musona’s preference to stay in Europe also triggered interest from agents seeking to get him a club in Europe with such destinations like Belgium, Netherlands, and Switzerland being mentioned.

There is also speculation that Musona could yet be sold to a second tier German club but there are also genuine concerns from the prospective clubs about the player’s fitness.

While Musona’s move to Chiefs was officially being called off, his friend and countryman Ovidy Karuru has been certified eligible to feature for Amakhosi after getting his work permit.

Karuru has had to miss Chiefs opening three league games and their MTN8 Cup games as he was waiting for the South African Home Affairs Ministry to issue him with a working visa.

It was the same story for Maritzburg United’s former Zimbabwe youth international Khumbulani Banda.

The players’ manager Edzai Kasinauyo said yesterday the pair was relieved to have finally received their permits which would make them available for selection at their respective clubs.

“I think the scary part for a player when he has found a club and got a contract is the wait to get a work permit and with the new regulations in South Africa where you have to go and apply from your country, it can cause anxious moments but that is what the law says.

“I am glad the PSL also entered into an agreement for the players to be issued with temporary permits that enabled them to continue training with their clubs because the pre-season is very critical period to be together with the rest of the squad.

“The players are excited and they can’t wait to start playing now that they are up for selection,’’ Kasinauyo said.

Banda would have to wait until August 26 when Maritzburg play Chippa United in a league match to see if he can make his debut while Karuru could make his maiden appearance as early as tomorrow when Amakhosi host Platinum Stars in a MTN Cup semi-final second leg tie at FNB stadium.

Should he be thrown into fray Karuru could link up with Willard Katsande and Kingston Nkatha who have been playing regularly for Chiefs in their bright start to the season in which they are unbeaten in the league games as well as in the cup.

Katsande yesterday also vowed to help his side see off Platinum Stars tomorrow but the Warriors and Amakhosi midfield enforcer said they would not sit back and try to defend their first leg advantage.

The former Gunners and Ajax Cape Town man told Chiefs’ website that they could not afford to let Platinum Stars grab an early goal and pile pressure on them.

“Anything can happen in the game of football. If we let them score first, it will open up the game and put us under pressure, so, we want to avoid that to happen on Sunday.

“We will apply the coach’s game-plan to avoid conceding a goal. It is our home game, we will go on an all-out attack in order to kill the contest early in the game.

“We want to score goals. The fans pay their hard-earned money to come to the stadium and to repay them we must score goals. It is our duty and we need to go to the finals, and a healthy win on Sunday will send another strong message to our opponents,’’ Katsande said. The Herald

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