Cape Town - Bloemfontein Celtic captain Patrick Tignyemb has backed former team-mate Thabo Nthethe to bounce back from a difficult season at Mamelodi Sundowns, saying a return to Phunya Sele Sele could be one of the options for the defender.
Nthethe has fallen far down the pecking order in Pitso Mosimane’s team, featuring in just two games this season, leading to reports that he will leave the PSL leaders when his contract runs out on June 30.
The 33-year old made a big move from Celtic to Sundowns in 2014 where he has won several trophies including the CAF Champions League.
But the defender was linked with the likes of Orlando Pirates and SuperSport United in the recent January transfer window as well as a return to Bloem Celtic.
“He is a big fighter and I expect him to overcome the frustrations he is going through at the moment,” Tignyemb exclusively told Vodacom Soccer.
“For me as an individual, I would like to see him back where it all started for him and I think that the door will always be open for him at Celtic, but the decision to bring him back lies with the management of the club and the coach.
“The defenders that we have at the moment have been doing well, but adding a player of his qualities can improve our squad. Why not if he is available?
“I have played with him before and it makes life easier for a goalkeeper to have a player of his qualities playing in front of you because he is very humble and a good team player.”
Tignyemb has also called on his teammates to maintain consistency having clinched two successive victories, over Richards Bay and Platinum Stars in Nedbank Cup and Premiership matches respectively.
They have been drawn against Maritzburg United in the quarter-finals of the cup competition.
“I think we are back from a slump that we had earlier in the season having clinched two victories from our last two matches,” he said.
“Our confidence had gone down midway through the season and it led to a string of poor results, but we are back to winning ways. It’s all part of football to have the ups and downs.”