KAIZER Chiefs’ Khama Billiat is being linked with a big-money move to several North African clubs. How much would Amakhosi miss him if he were to leave?
According to Moroccan publication Maghrib Foot, Raja Casablanca are interested in Billiat, as are Al-Ahly and Zamalek.
Billiat’s agent Michael Ngobeni said he “can’t deny that there is interest in the player from a number of clubs”.
Billiat set up a team-high 47 chances in the PSL last season, including 11 for Leonardo Castro and eight for Bernard Parker.
He picked up five PSL assists in the campaign, but 12 in all competitions, albeit with two of those against Elgeco Plus in the Caf Confederations Cup qualification round.
Billiat scored 14 goals in all competitions, although only just five league goals and only one in his final 15 PSL games last season. His total was heavily boosted by hitting a hat-trick against relative minnows in Zimamoto in the Caf competition.
He had 2.95 shots per 90 minutes, more than any other Chiefs player and often carried the threat to opponents even if his PSL scoring total was fairly low.
The Zimbabwean made 61 dribbles in the PSL last season, more than any other Chiefs player. He also delivered 56 crosses, with only Parker (63) delivering more. Billiat played largely as a forward, not a winger, but he still moved wide to create danger at times.
His high-pressing under coach Ernst Middendorp was better, but he still only made 1.34 tackles per 90 minutes he was on the pitch. Under Giovanni Solinas, he had a role up front where he was not expected to do any defensive work.
Going by these stats, Chiefs would lose one of their best players from last season, but also one who underperformed in the PSL and ended the campaign in a disappointing run of form, failing to score in 14 of his last 15 matches.
Amakhosi have bolstered their attack with two forwards in Lazarous Kambole and Samir Nurkovic, but despite their outstanding goal scoring records in Zambia and Slovakia (second tier), they are not proven at PSL level.
Should Chiefs sell Billiat, they would need to reinvest the money in a top replacement. Siya sources confirmed that they made a bid for Evans Rusike in May and they could rekindle that interest. – Soccer Laduma