By Grace Chingoma
Warriors skipper Knowledge Musona’s future is again under the spotlight at Belgian giants Anderlecht. The club regrouped on Monday, after a short end-of-season break, amid reports they are on the verge of offloading some of the players.
The Zimbabwe international forward is back at his parent club, Anderlecht, after a successful loan stint at KAS Eupen.
Musona, who was back home for a short break, returned to Belgium yesterday. And, according to media reports from Belgium, a number of players, are likely to be released by the club.
The reports claim there has been a change of business plan, at the club, who are now relying on promoting some of their exciting youthful players, into their first-team squad.
The reports, in the Belgian media, appear to suggest the club want to significantly reduce their huge wage bill.
And, to do that, they are expected to release many of their highly-paid senior players.
Musona has a year remaining, on his contract, with the Belgian Pro League side. He joined Anderlecht from fellow Pro League side, KV Oostende, in 2018.
According to the authoritative Voetbal publication, Anderlecht, face a huge task as they regroup.
“It is difficult to say exactly how many core players Anderlecht have,’’ the publication reported.
“Vincent Kompany regularly has youth players to train, while RSCA also lends out numerous players.
“What is clear is that Anderlecht has too many players, too much, and it wants to do something about that.
“Sporting director, Peter Verbeke, will soon have to find a solution for the Bakkalis (Zakaria), Nkakas (Aristote) and Musonas of this world.
“It will not be easy to wean them out, but it has to be done.”
Musona still could to return to Eupen, on a permanent deal, after he transformed himself into one of the club’s key players, last season.
However, the Spanish coach, Benat San Jose, who turned the Warriors skipper into one of the key players at the club, giving him a deeper role in midfield, has parted with the team.
Former Warriors defender, Cephas Chimedza, says the true picture will emerge in the next few days or weeks.
“After a few days of training, it will be clearer,’’ said the Belgium-based ex-Dynamos and CAPS United star.
“Kompany just changed how they operate and has gone for young boys, rather than the Anderlecht ways of before.
“They managed, though, to sign last season, the best player in the league, and he is 35. “The Player of the Year from last season, whom Anderlecht signed from Antwerp, plays the same position that Knowledge was playing at Eupen.”
Musona has also been linked with a possible move back to South African Premiership.
He remains a very popular figure in that league, where he started his professional journey with Kaizer Chiefs, before leaving for German Bundesliga side TSG 1899 Hoffenheim.
Last season, Musona was again linked with either a return to the Amakhosi or a move to Mamelodi Sundowns.
Both clubs have shown interest and also have the capacity to stretch their budgets.
The return of coach Stuart Baxter, who has worked with Musona before, to the Amakhosi, has boosted speculation Chiefs could consider tabling an offer for Musona.
A pairing of Musona and Khama Billiat, which has been very successful for the Warriors, is seen as a dream move for Chiefs.
However, the message from Musona’s handlers has been that, at the moment, it’s unlikely any of the two clubs could match what he is getting in Belgium.
And, after his impressive showing, in the colours of Eupen, it’s unlikely that he will consider coming to Supa Diski, for next season.
After all, with a year still to run on his contract, he holds the aces as Anderlecht would have to buy him out of the deal, if they feel they want to cut all links with him.
Musona has been the best player for the Warriors, in the past decade, in which he has been the heartbeat of the senior national team’s success.
As captain, he has now led the Warriors to two successive AFCON finals, matching the record which was set by Peter Ndlovu, in 2004 and 2006. The Herald