‘AGE IS JUST A NUM­BER’

Kick Off - - FACE TO FACE -

Former South African striker Shaun Bartlett, who turned out for var­i­ous clubs abroad in the United States, Switzer­land and Eng­land, signed for Kaizer Chiefs in 2006, just months be­fore Siphiwe Tsha­bal­ala’s ar­rival at Na­turena, and is de­lighted to see his former team­mate fi­nally se­cure a move abroad. “It shows that age is just a num­ber,” the Su­perS­portTV an­a­lyst tells KICK OFF. “I re­mem­ber sign­ing for Chiefs in the same year [sic], in 2006. There’d been so many moves on the cards for him, both pre­and post-2010, which never ma­te­ri­alised, but maybe it’s all about tim­ing. He’s a lot more ma­ture now.” Bartlett, who parted ways with Univer­sity of Pre­to­ria at the end of last sea­son after two-anda-half years as head coach, says the Euro­pean men­tal­ity re­gard­ing the age of play­ers dif­fers con­sid­er­ably to that of South Africa, and is hope­ful that Tsha­bal­ala will make a suc­cess of his time in Turkey. “That’s the beauty of Euro­pean foot­ball – they don’t re­ally care about age,” he says. “If you are good enough, and fit and healthy, then they’ll give you a chance. Hope­fully he’ll get a good two years un­der his belt, and use it to his ad­van­tage.”

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