When Keagan Dolly signed for the French Ligue 1 side Montpellier HSC from Mamelodi Sundowns last week for €1.7-million, he became the 62nd South African footballer to be plying his trade in a foreign land this season.
That may sound like a lot but when you consider the calibre of the clubs and leagues that our players represent, you get a clear sense of the global reputation South African football currently possesses.
Steven Pienaar and Thulani Serero, the two brightest prospects overseas in recent years, have seen their stars wane. The former has made just 12 appearances in a difficult season at Sunderland in England’s top flight and the latter has dropped down the pecking order at Ajax Amsterdam, where he now plays most of his football for the second team and is looking for a transfer.
As for the rest of our footballers around the world, most play in obscure leagues such as Armenia, Azerbaijan, Cambodia, Malta and Wales.