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How Mamelodi Sundowns could line up with Jeremy Brockie

5:15 PM SGT 16/1/18
Jeremy Brockie is challenged by Tiyani Mabunda - SuperSport United v Mamelodi Sundowns
With Masandawana's pursuit of the star striker finally paying off, Goal looks at how the side could line up going forward

After a long-drawn-out transfer saga, Mamelodi Sundowns finally got their man on Monday afternoon when SuperSport United agreed to part with their prized asset, Jeremy Brockie.

Brockie had been on the Masandawana radar for quite some time, with coach Pitso Mosimane making no secret of his admiration for the New Zealand international, but with the 53-year-old procuring arguably his number one target of the January transfer window, all eyes will now fall on how Brockie will be utilised in a team filled with quality attack-minded players, and whether or not he is the final piece to the Sundowns puzzle.

During the 30-year-old’s stay at Sundowns’ cross-town rivals, Brockie proved that although he was the focal point of many of SuperSport’s attacks, he wasn’t necessarily your typical number nine.

While possessing the physical attributes, he has shown that there is so much more to his game and that has showed in the fact that he had picked up two assists in 13 league appearances this season.

But despite Brockie’s attacking versatility, what's for certain is that Sundowns have found themselves a proven goalscorer and that will primarily be his job description for the Tshwane giants over the next few years. 

At SuperSport Brockie made a total of 119 appearances in all competitions, scoring 54 goals in the process, three goals shy of equalling Matsatsantsa’s all-time goal scoring record held by the late Abram Raselemane.

Now, with the former Wellington Phoenix attacker’s move now confirmed, Goal takes a look at some of the potential formations that Mosimane could use to accommodate Brockie.


4-3-3


This has often been Mosimane’s formation of choice, and it would seem more likely that Brockie will head the attack, playing slightly ahead of the two other attackers. This may suit Brockie, who is likely to play off Percy Tau and Themba Zwane or perhaps even new signing Aubrey Ngoma, as this will allow him to be more involved in the play rather than being a target man.

Brockie enjoys having the ball at his feet and playing in a front three could potentially get the very best out of him.

Also, having Tau in the squad allows Brockie to drift into the wider positions as the Sundowns current top scorer can also play as a false nine.


4-2-3-1


This is a position that Brockie would be rather familiar with, playing as an out-and-out centre forward. At SuperSport, Bradley Grobler was often the player to feed off Brockie, but due to the duo’s similarities, it did not always pay off. Rather with a pacey player such as Tau at Mosimane’s disposal, the partnership could be a match made in heaven.

This formation could also see Brockie drop deeper and play as the most advanced player in the midfield three, with Tau leading the line. That would allow for Brockie to use his physicality to keep opposition defences on their toes and at the same time give Tau the freedom to express himself upfront.


4-2-2-2


While the more conventional 4-4-2 formation has been ostracised in the past as being dogmatic and not suitable for the modern game by many critics, the 4-2-2-2 is a tactical spin on the norm. This formation will see Sundowns utalise wing-play in midfield with two holding midfielders steering the ship.

However, what this formation does, is free up space upfront and this would again see the Brockie-Tau partnership evolve. It not only guarantees having as many bodies in the box, maximising the probability of scoring but also allows for an extra creative outlet as the two strikers are allowed to play off each, and again with a player such as Brockie in the side, Tau could be the biggest winner as he can be used in a free role.

Nevertheless, while the partnership of Tau and Brockie has the potential to be one of the league’s most devastating, it should be noted that Sibusiso Vilakazi could easily slot into any of the positions alongside Brockie, meaning that the former African champions are certainly not short of options upfront.

There is also the conundrum of Khama Billiat's role in the unlikelihood of him staying at Sundowns. He could also possibly play alongside Brockie, while Tau could move to a wider role.

Sundowns may not have signed many players during the current transfer window, but with the signing of a player of the calibre of Brockie, the possibilities of what can be achieved are endless, and with a Caf Champions League campaign on the horizon, having such a striker is essential if they hope to once gain conquer the continent.