CEO Matthews heaps praise on veteran defender

Khumalo to play more roles at SuperSport after hanging up his boots

Sihle Ndebele Journalist
Bongani Khumalo of Supersport United during the DStv Premiership 2020/21 game between Golden Arrows and Supersport United at Sugar Ray Xulu Stadium in Durban on 28 October 2020.
Bongani Khumalo of Supersport United during the DStv Premiership 2020/21 game between Golden Arrows and Supersport United at Sugar Ray Xulu Stadium in Durban on 28 October 2020.
Image: Gerhard Duraan/BackpagePix

United chief executive Stan Matthews has laid bare their desire to give veteran defender Bongani Khumalo a job within the club after retiring.

Matsatsantsa have always been that club that use their former players in different capacities within the set-up post their playing days. Matthews reckons there are a number of roles Khumalo can play at the club after hanging up his boots.

“There’s no question that Bongani has got the capacity to play a role at the club after retirement. Whether it’s in coaching. He speaks very well, he could move into our media and marketing department if he wants to,’’ Matthews told Sowetan.

Khumalo, 34, came through SuperSport’s youth structures, making his professional debut for the club under Gavin Hunt as a 20-year-old in 2007. In 2010, the ex-Bafana Bafana centre-back joined English Premiership side Tottenham Hotspur.

“Bongani has been an exemplary leader. He’s got experience of playing in different countries in Europe. He knows what it’s like to be at our club as a youngster and he knows what it’s like to be at our club as a senior player. He’s a veteran now. I think he still got a few years left in him in terms of playing,’’ said Matthews.

“He’s quiet an astute businessman, he’s involved in a number of projects outside of football. He’s running his life very well off the field. He’s the perfect kind of character, alongside Andre Arendses, Grant Johnsons, Thabo Septembers, Ricardo Katzas. Those types of characters are people that we’d always like to have in our club.’’

Matthews also disclosed Khumalo’s move to Spurs made him the club’s most expensive player of all time. “Khumalo is the biggest [transfer dealing] in club’s history because it was in pounds. At that time we received £750,000 and he stayed with them for four years and there were additional payments,’’ Matthews disclosed.

“You must remember that R15 or R16-million in 2010... it was seven [R7] to the dollar. . Now it’s R15 and R19 at times, so that money would be 30-something or nearly R40-million in today’s terms.’’

Notable former players SuperSport gave jobs after retirement

  • Kaitano Tembo: retired in 2006 and was deployed to coach the club’s academy, today he’s coaching the senior team;
  • Andre Arendse: retired in 2013, currently the club’s keeper coach;
  • Ricardo Katza: retired in 2012, worked as an academy coach until he left for Grey College after 15 years at the club in 2018; and 
  • Thabo September: retired in 2016, he is one of Tembo’s assistants.

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