Shell Cup: A look at Chiefs and Sundowns' signings
With Kaizer Chiefs set to face Mamelodi Sundowns in the inaugural Shell Helix Ultra Cup on Saturday at the FNB Stadium, Vodacom Soccer looks at the new signings on both sides, and who could influence the outcome of this much anticipated pre-season encounter.
Chiefs' new signings...
Giovanni Solinas - coach: The experienced Italian spent the majority of his career in Algeria where he won the North African Cup Winners Cup with ES Setif in 2010. However, it seems his stint in charge of Free State Stars in 2015/16 was a major reason for his hiring at Naturena. In that year he led Ea Lla Koto to a Nedbank Cup semi-final defeat to Orlando Pirates, and avoided relegation.
Khama Billiat - forward: With 60 Premiership goals in his eight-year career in the PSL, the Zimbabwe hitman is amongst the best all-round attacking threats in the South African top-flight. Handed a deal to join Chiefs from Sundowns, the 27-year-old has plenty to prove against his old employers.
Letlhogonolo Mirwa - left-back: The 23-year-old is an unheralded name who joins the ranks from ABC Motsepe League side Buya Msutha, though he seems to have been brought in to contest for the vacant left-back spot. Following the departure of Tsepo Masilela, the young defender has a huge opportunity to make his mark for the Glamour Boys.
Andriamirado Andrianarimanana - central midfielder: Nicknamed 'Dax' for obvious reasons, the 27-year-old caught the eye at the 2018 COSAFA Cup for Madagascar where he was named Player of the Tournament. Football Manager Bobby Motaung has labelled him the new 'Reneilwe Letsholonyane' meaning there are big things expected of the playmaker.
Sundowns' new signings...
Andile Jali - central midfielder: The midfield workhorse has already made his official debut for Downs but it came in the defeat to AS Togo-Port in the CAF Champions League on Tuesday. The Bafana Bafana international perhaps failed to hit the heights in Belgium with KV Oostende, and no doubt will want to show he is as industrious and as aggressive as ever in the middle of the park.
Jose Ali Meza - forward: The Venezuelan arrives with a big reputation as being prolific in front of goals. Sundowns signed him from Bolivia's Oriente Petrolero. Soccerway report the 27-year-old hit 32 goals in his last 65 appearances for his former team.
Toni Silva - winger: The Guinea-Bissau man is a player with great pedigree and potential having been on the books of Benfica, Chelsea and Liverpool during his youth and professional career. Since then he has played all over the world without really establishing himself. He could be one to watch on Saturday.
Lyle Lakay - left midfielder: Lakay enjoyed a productive and yet unspectacular season for Cape Town City in 2017/18, yet seemed to catch the eye of Pitso Mosimane. With Downs' boss known for converting more attack-minded left-sided players into full-backs, Lakay could be the long term successor to Tebogo Langerman.
Tristan Luke Moses - defender: The young starlet arrived from Chiefs having made his name for the club in the MultiChoice Diski Challenge. The 20-year-old is yet to break into the first team ranks although he could be one to watch for the future.