By Ricky Zililo
Warriors defender Teenage Hadebe’s Yeni Malatyaspor survived relegation in the Turkish topflight league despite losing their last match of the season 3-1 away to giants Galatasaray.
Hadebe completed his second season in Turkey after joining Malatyaspor from South African Premiership side Kaizer Chiefs in the 2019/20 season.
Malatyaspor finished the season in 15th place with 45 points, 39 points behind champions Besiktas, who beat Galatasaray to the title due to a superior goal difference.
Hadebe ended the season with two goals, with his first coming last month in his side’s 1-0 win against Alanyaspor.
That victory came at a good time for Malatyaspor as they moved out of the relegation waters and held on till the end of the season.
It was a goal that ended Malatyaspor’s 13-game winless streak.
Hadebe’s side went on to win two matches out of their last seven games, drawing twice and losing three times.
An elated Hadebe, who played 30 out of the 40 league games for his club, said the hard work they put in as a team paid off.
“It has been an exciting season and I’m happy that we managed to finish better than last season. We always had a belief that we would survive and I’m happy that the goal I scored against Alanyaspor was the turning point for the club in the final run. Now we’re just relaxing and enjoying the moment,” said Hadebe.
The towering defender has also been a key figure in the Warriors’ squad that qualified for the next Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) finals.
Following an impressive season that saw him being named in the Super Ligi’s Team of the Week twice in the last eight games, Hadebe will be hoping his performances get him a better deal in Europe.
The Makokoba-bred footie star has always declared his desire to play in the English Premiership where his friend Marvelous Nakamba turns out for Aston Villa.
Nakamba was an unused substitute in Villa’s 3-2 loss to Crystal Palace yesterday. The Chronicle