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Coach Ertugral says he has been a long time admirer of new signing

Muhsin Ertugral has always been a long time admirer of striker Norman Smith and said he had no hesitation in snapping up the nomadic forward when the chance presented itself last week.

The 30-year-old Smith returned to Premier Soccer League action for the first time in 18 months for Lamontville Golden Arrows in their narrow 1-0 win over Mamelodi Sundowns at the Moses Mabhida Stadium at the weekend.

He was fast tracked into the starting line-up after just a single training session with Arrows, who have given him a two year deal despite the fact he last played in the top flight with Jomo Cosmos in March 2001.

“When I was coaching at Ajax and Chiefs, he was always a striker I admired and who I wanted to sign. He can hold up the ball; he is very quick.

“We have had a problem upfront with injuries and I even went to Latvia last week to try and get another player but this failed,” Ertugral explained to Goal.com.

“When I heard Smith was available I did not hesitate. He had one training session with us but he impressed me so much. It was a bit of a gamble but he’s played at Arrows before and he knows a few of the players, so he will quickly fit back in.”

Last week Smith had been set to sign at SuperSport United - another of his old clubs – but after they offered him just a short term deal he got on the plane to Durban.
Smith first made his name at Arrows after debuting with them in 2005.

He spent three seasons at Arrows, scoring 10 goals in 31 starts and winning three Bafana Bafana caps under Carlos Alberto Parreira, against Botswana, Zambia and Canada in late 2007.

After that he spent short spells at Thanda Royal Zulu and SuperSport United without scoring and in mid-2009, he joined Maritzburg but they let him go to Jomo Cosmos just six months later.

He faded into obscurity with Cosmos in the National First Division, after that only to emerge last week on trial at SuperSport, where coach Gavin Hunt said he was interested in offering the player a contract.

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