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Where will Phakamani Mahlambi fit in at Mamelodi Sundowns?

19:08 EAT 01/09/2018
Phakamani Mahlambi during the South Africa Training
Following the Bafana attacker's move to Chloorkop, how will he fit into coach Pitso Mosimane's plans?

Phakamani Mahlambi has been touted as South Africa’s golden boy and one of the brightest stars to come out of SA in recent years.

However, after a short spell in Egypt with one of the continent’s biggest clubs in Al Ahly, Mahlambi has returned to SA with expectations even higher as he officially joined Mamelodi Sundowns on Friday.  

Mahlambi has reportedly been brought in as a replacement for Percy Tau in particular, and Goal looks at just how the 20-year-old former Bidvest Wits attacker can be utilised at Chloorkop.


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While Mahlambi is a replacement for Tau, he does possess a ray of versatility and that could come in handy as he can be used anywhere in the frontline.

With Sundowns struggling for goals, Mosimane may be tempted to throw the attacker upfront where he can use his pace and dribbling ability to find the back of the net.

Mahlambi’s style of play will certainly suit Sundowns, which does put Jeremy Brockie’s place in the team in jeopardy.

Brockie is more of an 'old school' No.9, while Mahlambi can play as false nine in a similar role that Tau and Khama Billiat both played.

The South Africa international’s knack for goals also works in his favour.

Mahlambi scored nine goals in 27 appearances during his time with Wits, and this may be something that Mosimane may look to capitalise on should he use him as the furthest man forward.


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Mahlambi’s unique versatility could also come in handy at Sundowns considering their depth and stamina.

But perhaps one of the most frequently used positions has been that of him being deployed as a winger.

During his time at Wits, he was used predominantly on the wing and his ability to use both feet made him an asset.

With pace and skill also strongest attributes, Mosimane may be tempted to allow Mahlambi to use his creativity to feed in balls for the likes of Sibusiso Vilakazi and perhaps even Brockie.

Mahlambi is a technically gifted footballer and with the likes of Toni Silva and Jose Ali Meza still finding their feet, and Aubrey Ngoma and George Lebese struggling for game time, the youngster's introduction makes competition for places even more stiff.   


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Meanwhile, in many ways Mahlambi is a like-for-like replacement for Tau as they are both players who enjoy having the ball at their feet.

What sets Mahlambi apart though, is that at such a young age he has built a reputation for himself, after all he did not move to Egypt for no good reason.

Al Ahly, themselves, were perhaps not happy to lose Mahlambi, but the player’s heart was no longer at the club.

Nonetheless, Mahlambi is now Sundowns’ treasure, and Mosimane may be tempted to use him behind a player like Vilakazi or the lanky frame of Brockie.

His pace and skill will again come to the fore because playing just behind the strikers will give him the space to break down opposition defences and form a link with any of the strikers.

Playing as a No.10 also could see him chip in with goals as he will be given greater freedom to express himself than he would enjoy playing as a centre forward.