It has been an injury-ravaged couple of months for Al Ahly star Percy Tau, but the forgotten Bafana Bafana striker seems to be slowly finding his groove once again following his latest exploits in Egypt.
Subsequent to leaving English Premier League giants Brighton & Hove Albion, the ‘Lion of Judah’ had a great start to his football career in North Africa under the tutelage of Pitso Mosimane.
The 28-year-old Witbank-born man captured the Egyptian Super Cup as well as the CAF Super Cup in his debut season with the Red Devils having netted eight goals and provided a further six assists in 33 appearances across all competitions. He was unfortunate to miss out on the Club World Cup due to an anterior muscle injury, as Mosimane led the Club of the Century to a historic bronze medal spot.
Little did Tau know that his injury setback in January this year would be the start of a torrid spell on the sidelines after limping off in Al Ahly’s 3-0 Egyptian League Cup loss to Smouha.
The real battle however started when his club confirmed that he would be ruled out of competitive action for at least four weeks, which meant that he would not only miss the Club World Cup in the United Arab Emirates but that he would also not recover in time for Bafana’s high-profile friendly against the world champions France.
It was also during this period that Al Ahly’s standards dropped below average. Mosimane’s charges relinquished the CAF Champions League title after falling to a 2-0 defeat to Wydad Casablanca – his last game in charge of the club and equally failed to defend their Egyptian Premier League crown which was wrestled away by rivals Zamalek.
Upon recovering from injury, Tau still missed matches as he struggled with match fitness which saw his future at Al Ahly being thrown into doubt.
Then there was a proposed season-long loan deal to French Ligue 2 outfit Le Havre with an option to make the deal permanent, where he would unite with his former coach from his time in Belgium at Royale Union Saint-Gilloise, Luka Elsner, but the deal fell through at the last hurdle after a failure between all three parties in reaching an agreement.
Fast forward to almost four months later, Tau is regularly making the match-day squads and seems to be enjoying his football again under new Swiss manager Marcel Koller.
In Al Ahly’s last five matches, Tau found himself in the starting XI twice and scored in those back-to-back matches. He opened his account for the season in their 2-0 win over El Mahalla after featuring for 75 minutes, before playing the entire 90 minutes and scoring again as Al Ahly hammered El Ittihad 3-0.
Koller’s troops have now earned their sixth straight victory in the Egyptian Premier League atop of the standings, four points ahead of the White Knights.
Their next match will see them host Future on Friday, December 16, and Tau will once again be hoping to get another run and add to his tally for the campaign.