Pollen Ndlanya: Kaizer Chiefs didn't sign another Katlego Mphela or Jose Torrealba in Leonardo Castro

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Castro took the PSL by storm soon after his arrival at Sundowns, but his relationship with Pitso Mosimane turned sour at the start of the campaign

Legendary striker Pollen Ndlanya has praised Kaizer Chiefs' management following the acquisition of Leonardo Castro from Mamelodi Sundowns

The 28-year-old frontman was officially unveiled by the Glamour Boys on Monday afternoon, and he is expected to link up with his new teammates in January. 

In an exclusive interview with Goal, Ndlanya said Amakhosi needed a striker of Castro's calibre to solve their goalscoring problems. 

"Leonardo Castro is a very good signing for Chiefs. It was long overdue. Chiefs needed a quality striker like him," Ndlanya told Goal.

"Remember, he was no longer playing at Sundowns, and Chiefs saw the opportunity to sign him. They must be applauded for going for Castro. So, I'm very happy that Castro is finally a Chiefs player," he said. 

Ndlanya doesn't think Castro will be another Jose Torrealba or Katlego Mphela, who both did well at Sundowns but lost form soon after joining the Soweto giants 2008 and 2014 respectively.  

"No, I don't think he will be like those players [Mphela and Torrealba]. Castro is very smart. He's hungrier. He's tall and has got the physique. He's the kind of striker that Chiefs needed - a targetman who will finish off the goalscoring chances that they create. The only thing that he needs is to adapt quicker. Chiefs are playing beautiful football, but they just can't score and with Castro, I'm pretty sure they will start scoring goals," said Ndlanya.  

According to Ndlanya, who also played for Orlando Pirates among other teams in the PSL, what makes Castro different from the strikers that Steve Komphela currently has at his disposal, it's his ability to hold the ball upfront and allow teammates to play off him. 

"Now, they have Paez, Castro and Parker. Those are three quality strikers, but the other two [Parker and Paez] are not exactly the kind of strikers who can hold the ball upfront, wait for the supply and allow other players to play off them. Unlike Castro, they like to go deep and play one-twos. Maybe that's why Chiefs are not scoring enough goals, because there's no one standing there, waiting for the ball," he explained.  

"I won't mention Dumisani Zuma that much because he is still young and he needs to learn from the best, and that's where Castro comes in. We all saw what he can do at Sundowns, and I'm hoping that he can be given a chance at Chiefs. Let's see what he can offer the club. In my opinion, Paez is not the deadliest striker they have, but he works hard. Other players need to understand him better. I'd say if they can understand Castro quicker, then we will positive results," continued Ndlanya. 

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Komphela is of late using a 4-3-3 formation when attacking, but he quickly reverts to a 5-4-1 system when his team loses ball possession, and Ndlanya wants Chiefs to play a traditional 4-4-2 formation to accomodate Castro with either Parker or Paez as one of the two strikers upfront. 

"It's up to Komphela [to decide how to use Castro]. I won't say much about his tactical formations, but I would say a traditional 4-4-2 formation would suit Chiefs best with either Castro or Parker upfront or Castro and Paez as his twin strikers then we will see goals. But Castro has to play. He will score goals goals for Chiefs," added Ndlanya. 

"For a team to be competitive, it needs to have three top strikers and this is what Chiefs have right now. Congratulations to them for signing Castro," concluded Ndlanya.    

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