Mamelodi Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane has given the strongest indication yet that talisman Percy Tau could leave the club for greener pastures in the not too distant future, but suggests that he won't come cheap.
The 23-year-old Witbank-born playmaker has enjoyed a meteoric rise of recent seasons, but has truly come into his own this season as he has taken the Premier Soccer League (PSL) by storm. Tau most recently found the back of the net against Baroka FC, registering what was his 11th goal of the league season.
Talk regarding a potential move to Europe has steadily been gaining momentum, and it seems that Sundowns may be willing to part with their star player if a suitable offer is made by one of Europe’s top clubs.
“With players from other countries in Africa‚ it is easier for them to move overseas because they don’t earn big salaries,” the Sundowns mentor was quoted as saying by the Sowetan.
"But in our case‚ we have made a substantial investment in Percy and we want a return on our investment‚” Mosimane continued.
“We look after the players and let’s look at the business side of things. It was the same with Keegan Dolly. We gave him (Dolly) game time‚ training‚ contracts and all those things,” he recalled.
"Sometimes it doesn’t balance properly with the amount of money that the big European clubs want to pay for South African players,” he continued.
"In South Africa we pay more in terms salaries and those things bring a lot of challenges when players are supposed to go,” the former Bafana Bafana coach revealed.
"When European teams goes to Tunisia and Egypt‚ they know that they have to pay the right amount of money. South Africa is at that level and we are one of the biggest countries in Africa,” he explained.
“Anything is possible‚ he can leave anytime. I have said that if it’s one of the top five leagues in Europe like La Liga‚ Bundesliga‚ EPL‚ Serie A or Ligue 1.... why would you hold on to him? That would not be fair,” he admitted.
"Some of the clubs in those leagues are part of the G7 and it means they have got a lot of money. They must not say that we are going to Africa to pay less and when you go to South America you pay $30 million,” Mosimane expressed.
The 53-year-old further hailed the character and talents of Tau, who he also reveals had been battling with a bout of flu during Masandawana's last two games.
“Percy has played in the Champions League‚ for Bafana Bafana and at the Club World Cup and this tells you that he is not an average player,” he said.
"This is not a player who must go for trials. One of the big things about him is that he has played two games with flu,” he revealed.
"I told him that it is risky and legally we could be in trouble but the doctor checked him and told us that it is not on the borderline,” he added.
"That shows what kind of player he is. This is the player whose brother died and he was buried on Saturday and he came and wanted to play on Tuesday,” Mosimane hailed.
"The boy is on another level mentally‚ he puts his body on the line,” he concluded.