Five players cut as coach shuffles deck

Richard Nkosi

Richard Nkosi

Former Kaizer Chiefs striker Daniel Matsau is among the five players that have been put on the transfer list by National First Division side Mpumalanga Black Aces, formerly City Pillars.

The other players are midfielder Molefi "Ace" Ntsoelengoe, defender Xolani Makhoba and the striking duo of Agent Sawu and James Mothibi.

George Morfou, Aces co-director, said the players released were not in coach Aki Ayiomamithi's plans.

He said as part of their mission to gain automatic promotion to the Premiership next season they have to trim the squad to a manageable size. He said at the same time they have also promoted five players from their Vodacom League side, Aces Academy.

Forgotten Frank "Disco" Makua is reported to be training with the team. Zambian international Gift Kampamba and youth international Cyril Zuma have been retained.

Morfou also confirmed that the Premier Soccer League (PSL) has approved their request to change their name from City Pillars to Mpumalanga Black Aces.

The PSL's Andrew Dipela confirmed the name change, saying: "The league has approved three name changes. City Pillars are now Mpumalanga Black Aces, Fidentia rangers are iKapa Sporting while Silver Stars will now be known as Platinum Stars."

Morfou said: "We are happy about the name change since we want to revive the defunct Witbank Black Aces. We have also clinched a good deal with Diadora as our technical sponsor. The deal is a four-year agreement and is worth more than a million [rand]."

Amazayoni, as Aces will be known after the name change, will be using Van Riebeck Stadium in Witbank as their home ground. Alternative venues will be Embalenhle Stadium in Secunda and KaNyamazane Stadium in Nelspruit.

Meanwhile, Aces beat Premiership side Bidvest Wits 1-0 on Friday before they went and lost 1-0 to Silver Stars on Saturday in friendly games.