Can Serero revive his career at Vitesse Arnhem?

Following Serero's latest career move, Goal looks at whether the Bafana Bafana star has made the right choice

South African international Thulani Serero recently completed a move to fellow Eredivisie club SBV Vitesse after spending over five years in Amsterdam.

Serero was once touted as the golden boy of South African football and began his career promisingly in the Dutch topflight, but as the seasons went by his career stalled as he fell down the pecking order at Ajax, and found his game time limited. However, after spending yet another season with precious little first team action to show for it, and after subsequently losing his place in the national team set up, a move away from Ajax was necessitated.

Although, the move has been met with much positivity and optimism, Serero was not short of options with several clubs interested in the playmaker, and Goal looked at whether the former Premier Soccer League (PSL) Footballer of the Year’s choice to join Vitas was the best move for him.

The 27-year-old Serero, is arguably approaching the peak of his powers, which made the next step in his career all the more important. Prior to Serero’s decision to move to Vitesse, he had attracted interest from several clubs all over Europe as well as a return to South Africa was also bandied about.

Serero would have undoubtedly been welcomed home with open arms and would have been placed amongst the league’s top earners with Kaizer Chiefs and Mamelodi Sundowns keen on his signature. But his choice to remain in Europe should be applauded.  Many a time South African footballers return prematurely, but Serero is the exception, and on talent alone he is destined to succeed at his new club.

Thulani Serero Hakim Ziyech FC Twente Ajax Eredivisie 10182014

Aside from a return to South African shores, there was also interest from English Championship side Reading, but due to work permit issues, the interest dissipated. While a move to England is always seen a step in the right direction, for a player like Serero who only a few seasons ago was competing against the likes of Barcelona in Uefa Champions League, a move to the Championship would have been regarded as a step down.  

It should also be noted that Serero’s diminutive frame and skilful traits would have been deemed as ideal in many of Europe’s smaller leagues, such as the Belgian Pro League and the Portuguese Primeira Liga. But Serero’s prior refusal to join another Dutch club in Roda JC, does suggests his ambitions were loftier.

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An important factor that could possibly have motivated Serero’s decision to join Vitesse was the allure of once again competing in Europe. By virtue of winning the KNVB Cup final, Vitesse qualified for the Europa League next season. Also, Serero would have considered that Vitesse are a club on the rise having finished fifth in the league, and the fact that he is likely to be an integral figure in the side next season would have surely influenced Serero.

Nevertheless, Serero will just be glad to resume his progression and all South African’s will be relieved at the news as an in-form Serero only bodes well for Bafana Bafana.