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Kaizer Chiefs’ Middendorp keeping Castro at Amakhosi

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The race for registration spots appears to be heating up at Kaizer Chiefs following a revelation made by coach Ernst Middendorp on Wednesday.

The Premier Soccer League has stringent limitations as to how many ‘foreign’ nationals that do not hold permanent residence permits clubs are allowed to have on their books, which as of 2015 is a maximum of five, according to Article 34.2 in the NSL Handbook.

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At present Chiefs find themselves in ties with six, which includes new signings Lazarous Kambole, Samir Nurkovic and James Kotei, as well as Leonardo Castro, Daniel Akpeyi and Andriamirado Andrianarimanana.

There was earlier speculation that Castro would be offloaded due to poor performance, but Middendorp has since revealed that the Colombian has re-established himself in the club’s plans for the season ahead following his showing in pre-season thus far.

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“Leonardo Castro has really had a good pre-season so far, and nothing is going on at the moment from outside,” announced the German ahead of this weekend’s Carling Black Label Cup.

“I’m very happy with Castro in [terms of] how he took this pre-season and how he contributed into it. So, yeah, there’s nothing in it.”

Asked whether a decision has been made on which of the other foreigners would then be sacrificed, Middendorp would not be drawn into confirming just yet.

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“The registration [window] is still ongoing and we’ll have to see. Castro is coming back into interest from our side and he can be a good pairing with some players from what we have seen so far,” he added.

“And, yes, a decision must be made at a certain time, but at the moment we don’t have to decide. I know, of course, we have six players and we can only have five.

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“When we started pre-season, Leonardo was somehow going so okay, we then went and looked for options, and it then came in a different way.

“So, I’m very happy to have him here and it looks like we’ll go with him as one of the five.”

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