Ricky Zililo, Senior Sports Reporter
AN unnamed Chinese club is angling to “hijack” one of their rivals, who invited Prince Dube for an assessment following reports that they want to sign him outright.
Dube’s Ireland-based agents Joe Mart Sports and Events as well as Highlanders are keeping a tight lid on the player’s move to China, with two clubs reportedly interested in the Bosso star.
The 22-year-old national team striker sneaked out of the country on Christmas Eve to China to attend trials at a yet to be named Chinese club but reports have surfaced that another club has tabled an offer. It is believed that the offer is “less-lucrative” than the one the 2019 Soccer Star of the Year second runner-up could get from the team which invited him for trials.
“His handlers (Joe Mart Sports and Events) have been handling the issue and are in constant communication with the club and this is why you saw the chief executive officer (Nhlanhla Dube) at the offices during the holidays. Another player (club) has come in and offered to sign Prince without trials but the team which invited him for trials has better financial muscle than these ones who want him without trials,” said the source.
Writing on their website joemartsportsandevents.com, Dube’s handlers revealed that clubs in Dubai, Morocco and Sweden have shown interest in the striker, who scored seven league goals for Bosso. Dube was also instrumental in inspiring Highlanders to Chibuku Super Cup glory, scoring at every stage of the tournament.
The Bosso hitman had an unsuccessful stint with South African side SuperSport United after joining in July 2017 before returning to Highlanders at the beginning of 2019 to relaunch his career.
He became a vital component for Bosso, who had a poor start to the season, but ended strongly to finish sixth on the league table.
The 22-year-old Highlanders hitman finished the season in style as he scored an incredible goal in Chibuku Super Cup final to clinch the cup.
“He also finished top scorer in the Africa Cup of Nations Championships qualifiers with four goals. He also went on to win the runners-up medal for best player in the league. This undoubtedly set him up well for a number of clubs seeking his signature. Wydad Casablanca, Difaa Hassani D’el Jadida in Morocco, Al Ain in UAE and Dgugardens in Sweden all made clear intents to sign the player. However, the player seems to be heading for China where two teams have also confirmed interest in signing him,” reads a statement on the Joe Mart Sports and Events website.
Highlanders spokesperson Ronald Moyo said: “When the time is right, we will issue a statement.” — @ZililoR.