Absa Premiership

Academy director unsurprised by Billiat's success

2016-06-07 18:25
Khama Billiat (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Aces Academy director Nigel Munyati reveals that he always knew that Khama Billiat and Knowledge Musona would achieve great things in their football careers.

Having come up under the tutelage of Munyati at Zimbabwe's Aces Youth Soccer Academy, both Billiat and Musona are said to have impressed from an early age.

"We had no doubts about Knowledge and Khama. Even when we sent them to Europe the reports that we got back were always very complimentary and I knew they would one day make it," Munyati told The Herald.

"What also happens is that we always try and send some of our high potential players to Europe so both Knowledge and Khama spent some time there.

"They were given opportunities like in South Africa, they were not overwhelmed, because they had got used to playing on such a level."

The attacking duo each bagged a goal in the Warriors' 3-0 victory over Malawi in an AFCON 2017 qualifying fixture over the weekend, which secured their berth into next year's continental showdown in Gabon.

Munyati attributed the running of the country's most-successful football academy to the resurgence of the national team, which sees captain Willard Katsande joining Peter Ndlovu as only second captain to take Zimbabwe to the African Cup of Nations.

Premiership Footballer of the year, Billiat has been heavily linked with a move to French club Lille who have reportedly been monitoring the player's progress for some time now.

"The unfortunate thing is that Khama hasn't gone over yet, because he would have been successful if he had left earlier," Munyati added.

"I think he is ready. He is 25, about the upper limit of transfers to Europe in terms of age and I think he still has, at least, a good five years in Europe and it could be 10 years depending with how he handles himself, but physically he is quite ready, and mentally also he is quite ready."

Read more on:    mamelodi sundowns  |  khama billiat  |  soccer

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