Kaizer Chiefs senior trio of Itumeleng Khune, Bernard Parker and Willard Katsande will all be remaining at the club with fresh contracts already ironed out.
Chiefs will report back to training on July 4 for what will be a mix of the start of pre-season training, in between preparing for their historical CAF Champions League final against Al Ahly at the Stade Mohammed V in Casablanca set for July 17.
Word is that Amakhosi have decided to keep the three most experienced players at the club for at least another year, to create a ‘proper transition instead of pushing them out while the train is moving’, especially now ahead of the massive continental final.
The contract issues of the players have been given as much respect and guard, considering the situation the club is now in, with their first ever Champions League final on the horizon, beyond what was a horrible domestic campaign that brought about the return of Stuart Baxter.
Baxter still values the experience of Khune, Parker and Katsande, having worked with them in his previous stint when he won four trophies in three years.
It is said the Briton doesn’t believe in shaking up the balance of the squad, and will rather hold it out with his trusted lieutenants in his first season instead of basing his assessment on the past season overseen by Hunt, before revaluating the situation next year.
Of the three, Khune played the least number of games, with 18 appearances, but that shouldn’t be reason to start questioning his quality or value that he brings to the club.
Parker was used the most, with 41 appearances, and regularly captained the team as well, while Katsande was evidently out of favour under Gavin Hunt but eventually raised his hand to prove that he remains an important figure in Chiefs’ two-legged semi-final win over Wydad Casablanca.
The club is only expected to make formal announcements around departures after the massive fixture on July 17.-KickOff