Chiefs unveil Tower's jersey
KAIZER Chiefs unveiled new coach Stuart Baxter at a function in Johannesburg's south yesterday, and a mannequin representing central defender Mulomowandau Mathoho.
Chiefs have been trying for weeks to nail down the signature of Bloemfontein Celtic's talented defender Mathoho, but interest from Orlando Pirates, and especially Mamelodi Sundowns, has held up the process.
In the absence of the player himself when Amakhosi introduced new signings Morgan Gould, Siyabonga Nkosi, Siboniso Gaxa, Sakhile Hlongwa and Khotso Moleko, Chiefs could only produce a jersey that read: "Mathoho" above the number 3. Mathoho's mannequin was not available for interviews.
Chiefs' marketing director Jessica Motaung confirmed the club have not yet finalised a deal for "Tower" to come to Naturena.
"We are working on a deal. We have agreed terms with the player, and we are confident we will finalise a deal for the player to be earning this jersey," Motaung said.
"We are speaking to the player, but we haven't dotted the i's and crossed the t's. Our supporters must know we are working 24-7 to make that happen.
"... If you look at it, we are the ones who have been in the forefront, and one of the great things is the player is clear and confident that he wants to be at Kaizer Chiefs."
Motaung was asked if it was wise to introduce a player before a deal had been concluded.
"I'm introducing a jersey, and not a player," she replied. "It's the potential of something that we are aiming for. Sometimes in the universe you have to put it out there to get it."
Baxter said Chiefs' strong signings have sent out a "letter of intent" that they want to be among the dominant clubs in the country again. In recent years Amakhosi have fallen behind to big spenders Pirates and Sundowns.
"If you look at all the leagues in the world, clubs like Manchester City in England and PSG in France that have been taken over by multi-billionaires very soon pull away from the pack.
"I'm not saying that's what's happened here in South Africa, but that is the tendency."
Baxter said he has not been given a specific performance mandate by Chiefs in terms of trophies.
"No one has said to me that we need to win the league this year or next year, or at least one cup, or whatever. What I do understand very clearly is that Kaizer Chiefs are a club with great ambitions," he explained. "And my mandate is to try and fill those ambitions to the absolute best of my ability, both short term and long term."
l Chiefs yesterday announced the appointment of Alpheus Vina Maphosa as corporate communications manager. Maphosa is a former director of cooperative education at Vaal University of Technology and has served on the board of several companies.