Sinan RAJUB SENOGA
Uganda Cranes goalkeeper Ismail Watenga is a transfer target for South Africa’s giants Mamelodi Sundowns and Orlando Pirates according to South African publication Soccer Laduma.
Watenga is one of the best performers at Chippa United and tops the list of the clean sheets table in the DStv Premiership this season.
The former Vipers shot stopper has managed two clean sheets in the first two games of the season, one against newcomers Sekhukhune United and defending champions Mamelodi Sundowns.
According to Soccer Laduma, Orlando Pirates have been monitoring Watenga’s performance at Chippa and sources reveal that Watenga has been identified as a back-up plan for their unconvincing goalkeeping department.
Watenga has had an impressive form since making his debut in Chippa United’s 2-1 defeat to Sundowns in the closing stages of last season.
Former Bush Bucks goalkeeper Vusumzi Yashe lauds Watenga for his impressive displays so far and anticipates him to move to Sundowns ahead of Pirates.
“As a former goalkeeper myself, I have been vocal on social media about Watenga’s performances. He is a very good goalkeeper and what I like about him is that he’s got the basics of goalkeeping. I am very impressed with him for the way he reads the game so well.”
Yashe told Soccer Laduma.
” If he remains injury-free, he will go far. If you have been following him, he is playing the role of sweeper keeper at Chippa United. His handling skills and positioning are very good. He doesn’t dive that much because his positioning is always good. Luckily, I also communicate with him on social media, and I am always encouraging him.” He added.
” If it happens that he goes to either Pirates or Sundowns, I think one of those two teams would have got themselves a good goalkeeper,”
Watenga kept six clean sheets in the 13 games he played for the Chilli Boys across all competitions and helped them survive relegation as well as reaching the final of the Nedbank Bank which they lost to Tshakhuma TM.
” I am not surprised to hear that Sundowns is monitoring him, because he came to Mzansi for Sundowns in the first place at the recommendation of Denis (Onyango).”
” I think the boy will give Sundowns first preference if he has to leave Chippa, but because Sundowns is strong in their goalkeeping department, I cannot rule out a move to Pirates for him,” Yashe added.
Watenga is currently with Uganda Cranes who will be taking on Mali in the second World Cup Qualification game on Monday 6th September at the St. Mary’s Stadium in Kitende.