How Ex Chiefs star Nkambule Missed Out On Manchester United

Michael Nkambule of Kaizer Chiefs

Former Kaizer Chiefs star, Michael Nkambule has revealed the reason why he failed to sign with Manchester United’s development side two decades ago.

Chiefs’ presence in an international tournament provided the opportunity for the then young South African sensation Nkambule, with a platform to be scouted by Manchester.

Nkambule was on the verge of joining the Old Trafford’s giants in 2003 from Kaizer Chiefs. However, a deal could not be completed and the now retired footballer has for the first time explained the reason why.

“While we were playing in the Junior Milk Cup Tournament for Kaizer Chiefs in 2003 in Northern Ireland, I was scouted by Manchester United,” Nkambule told Thisisfootball.Africa.

“I went there (Manchester) to train with the team. I trained with them in 2003 in June, October, and December. But due to work permit problems, they could not sign me.

“That is how I missed the chance of playing for Manchester United. They could have signed me, but they said there was a work permit problem because I was South African.”

The then young Chiefs’ star instead went to France after the possible move to Manchester United did not materialize.

“After missing that Manchester opportunity, my then agent Bruno Satin took me to France to play for Racing Strasbourg B team. I played until they loaned me to SuperSport United in 2006,” Nkambule added.

“I then went back to France, but I couldn’t get game time. I was no longer playing, so I told my agent that I want to go. We spoke with Bobby Motaung and I returned to Chiefs.

“Bobby informed me that I should not go back to SuperSport. He said that if I would like to come back to South Africa, then I must come back home (Chiefs) and I was coming back to play for the first team.”

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Michael Nkambule of Kaizer Chiefs against Manchester United during his playing time. Photo - Google
Michael Nkambule of Kaizer Chiefs against Manchester United during his playing time. Photo – Google