Is Percy as footballer of the season Tau much to hope for?
Sundowns superstar and Maritzburg United midfielder Siphesihle Ndlovu are the favourites
Over the past few weeks, debate among South African football fans has been dominated by who should be the footballer of the season.
Opinion is divided, with most people punting Maritzburg United midfielder Siphesihle Ndlovu and Mamelodi Sundowns attacker Percy Tau as the frontrunners.
Some believe that, despite being part of a disappointing Kaizer Chiefs under former coach Steve Komphela, South Africa’s number one goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune has produced enough individual performances to at least be listed among the nominees.
Other distant voices have made a case for Orlando Pirates midfielder Musa Nyatama, who impressed under coach Micho Sredojevic in the club’s unsuccessful attempt to pip Sundowns to the finishing line.The 21-year-old Ndlovu has highly impressed by helping modest Maritzburg to fourth on the log with one league match remaining, and also playing a huge role in their qualification for the Nedbank Cup final.
However, Tau deserves to be the named the best player because he has stood head and shoulders above the rest with his all-round contributions as the Brazilians successfully wrested the PSL trophy from Wits.
He did not start the campaign like a house on fire, at some point incurring the wrath of impatient Sundowns supporters at Loftus, but he recovered brilliantly as the season progressed to establish himself as a vital cog in coach Pitso Mosimane’s well-oiled machine.
Tau played in all of Sundowns’ 29 league matches, racking up 11 goals and 15 assists. In cup competitions, he featured in three matches in the Nedbank Cup and once in both the MTN8 and Telkom Knockout.On the other hand, Ndlovu featured in 26 league matches for Maritzburg United where he scored five goals and contributed four assists. He made three appearances and one assist each in both the MTN8 and Nedbank Cup competitions.
In the Nedbank Cup, where Sundowns lost in the semifinal to Maritzburg United, Tau contributed two goals and one assist. However, he failed to find the net and did not contribute any assists in the MTN8 and Telkom Knockout.If Tau scores in Sundowns’ last match against Bloemfontein Celtic away from home on Saturday, and Rodney Ramagalela of Polokwane City fires blanks against Chippa United in Polokwane, Tau will be declared the leading goalscorer as the two are tied on eleven goals after 29 matches.
Tau has the impressive ability to develop play from the midfield, create chances for himself and his team mates, and take the game to the opposition even when the chips are down.
Persistent rumours are doing the rounds that Tau has done enough to attract overseas attention and the time is right for him to try his luck in one of the top five leagues in Europe: La Liga, Serie A, Ligue 1, EPL and Primeira Liga in Portugal.