Ndlovu to join Chinese side Hangzhou Greentown, eyes Bafana recall

PERHAPS Dino Ndlovu was right when he said back in 2016 that overseas football and not domestic football,Picture: Gallo Images

PERHAPS Dino Ndlovu was right when he said back in 2016 that overseas football and not domestic football was the way forward for him.

Having featured for Azerbaijan side Qarabag for the past 18 months, Ndlovu has been transferred to Chinese seconddivision side Hangzhou Greentown for a fee of about R15m.

The striker, who recently represented Qarabag in the Uefa Champions League against top sides such as Chelsea and Atletico Madrid, scored 20 goals in 54 appearances, earning a call up to Stuart Baxter’s Bafana Bafana side.

The Chinese second tier will be a bit of a jump from the eight-team Azerbaijan league, but, for Ndlovu, the biggest goal is to see himself in the Chinese Super League next season.

“I am grateful to what Qarabag have done for me and this is one challenge I look forward to with great excitement and enthusiasm. Everything has been agreed by the two sides and all that is left is for the paperwork to be processed,” Ndlovu said.

“My biggest target is to either help the team gain promotion to the Super League, because they have been in there in the past, or do well enough to earn a move to the Super League. I believe that in life you work for everything you want and that is what I will have to do to eventually play in the Super League.”

The former Mamelodi Sundowns, Bloemfontein Celtic and SuperSport United striker has enjoyed more success playing overseas than in the PSL.

While he considers his stint with Qarabag as the best of his career, the striker also did well for Israeli side Bnei Yehuda Tel Aviv before being snapped up by Maccabi Haifa, where he did relatively well, scoring 15 goals in 36 appearances.

He also did well in the less fancied Cyprus top tier with Anorthosis Famagusta, scoring 17 goals in 31 appearances. The striker is now eyeing more callups to Bafana. “I see this as a step up and that also demands that my game gets to a new level.

I leave everything in God’s hands and I will work hard to represent my country and finally show what I can do.”

-MMASEKEPE MATSEBANE|mmasekepem@thenewage.co.za