For the fourth time in two years, Varsity Football alumni Thembi Kgatlana is on the move.
First USA (Houston Dash), then China (Beijing BG Phoenix), then Portugal (SC Benfica) and next up for Kgatlana is Spain.
The 24-year-old striker had two years remaining of her contract with Benfica (who she only joined in January), but will instead play for SD Eibar, who are based in the Basque Autonomous Community of northern Spain, on a one-year contract.
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While Benfica qualified for the UEFA Women’s Champions League next season, ‘Pikinini will have to be patient for her chance to appear in the prestigious tournament. That is because Eibar are newly-promoted team for the 2020-21 Primera División Femenina de Fútbol season.
In a fillip for South African football, Kgatlana becomes the sixth Banyana Banyana player in the recent past to secure a lucrative deal overseas.
The other players include Nothando Vilakazi, whose new club EdF Logroño finished seventh in the curtailed 2019-20 Primera División Femenina de Fútbol season. Then there’s legendary national captain Janine Van Wyk (Glasgow City FC in Scotland), Kelso Peskin (Stade Brestois 29 Feminine in France), Jermaine Seoposenwe (SC Braga in Portugal) and erstwhile UJ striker Amanda Mthandi (CD Badajoz Feminino in Spain).
PLAYER PROFILE Thembi Kgatlana
Full name: Chrestinah Thembi Kgatlana
Born: 2/5/1996 at Leratong Hospital, Kagiso
Varsity Football experience: 2015 – runner-up
Studying: BA Tourism Management (final year to complete)