BY FORTUNE MBELE
THE return of striker Clive Augusto to Chicken Inn could be a major boost for the GameCocks’ title hopes as they go into the Castle Lager Premier Soccer League mid-season break leading the race.
Chicken Inn have reportedly been promised between US$130 000 and US$150 000 by their sponsors Simbisa Brands if they win the league, a big incentive for the players to grab the title.
Augusto (27) was part of the Chicken Inn campaign in 2019 and spent two years in South Africa where he played for Maritzburg United and lower tier side Uthongathi before he was released last year and returned home to join Caps United in August.
He was fired at Caps United last month together with Dennis Dauda and goalkeeper Simba Chinani for leading a job action.
Augusto retraced his footsteps to Chicken Inn where he has been training awaiting registration when the transfer window opens on July 1.
He will miss the restart on June 25, but will be available for the last 16 matches as well as the Chibuku Super Cup.
Chicken Inn coach Joey Antipas is excited at the return of Augusto, who banged in 14 goals in 17 matches for the GameCocks in 2019 to grab the Golden Boot Award, despite leaving the club for South Africa halfway through the season.
“We have got Clive (Augusto) as one of our new players. He started training with us. It is good to have him back. You know what Clive is capable of doing and we are hoping that he will deliver the goods,” Antipas said.
In 2019 after Augusto left, Chicken Inn fell short of the championship, coming second to FC Platinum.
With Augusto joining Malvin Hwata and Brian Muza upfront, Chicken Inn could be boasting the deadliest striking combination when the league resumes in three weeks’ time.
The 2015 championship-winning Antipas said they had identified a defender they wish to sign and two players could be on their way out.
“We are hoping to make another signing, a defender. We have identified the defender but we cannot release his name for now, but it looks like everything is in place. One or two players could be leaving to join other clubs on loan depending on which players are coming in,” Antipas said.
Going to the break, playmaker Richard Hachiro was still struggling with a back injury and Antipas said doctors had assured him that he could start light training next week while defender Michael Charamba who has struggled with a hamstring injury, has already started training.
- Follow Fortune onTwitter @fmbele