Percy Tau on Al Ahly transfer: South African critics don’t know what I’m going through

The 27-year-old’s decision to return to Africa has divided opinion and now the player himself has added his voice to the debate

Bafana Bafana star Percy Tau has hit back at his critics and revealed European clubs tried to lure him away from Brighton & Hove Albion but he opted for Al Ahly where he saw first-team opportunities.

The attacker joined the reigning African champions last Thursday from Brighton where he struggled for game time.

Having previously played in the Uefa Champions League while on loan at Club Brugge, as well as another loan-stint at Belgian giants Anderlecht, Tau’s wisdom in returning to Africa was questioned.

But the player has defended his decision, saying joining Al Ahly enhanced his chances of playing.

“The move made more sense to me than staying in Europe,” said Tau as per Sowetan Live.

“Of course, there were offers in Europe, but when I considered them and my age and all the other factors that I didn’t disclose to you guys [media], it made more sense for me to move there [Egypt].

“In most of the decisions… I consider how I feel. Why do I do that because I know I always have the support of South Africans. And I know South Africa is a footballing nation, so what’s the point of me sitting on [the bench] and not playing?

“Everyone wants to see me playing. I want to see myself playing. My family wants to see me play.  And of course, people will always have opinions. We are a big country and you can’t close that window.”

At Al Ahly, Tau has been reunited with coach Pitso Mosimane whom he previously worked with at Mamelodi Sundowns.

The player feels the situation he found himself in, to decide his next move, was not something new to him.

“But people will always have opinions on such moves and I’ve had such moves before. I went from Witbank Spurs to Mamelodi Sundowns academy when I was 17 years old. I went back to Spurs again on loan,” Tau said.

“I went to Brighton and there will still be some uncertainty regarding that move. I went to Union SG on loan. So, it is part of my career to move around and someone thinks if I stay here I was going to be okay.  

“But you don’t know what I feel at that moment, what I’m going through, you are only at home sitting and I’m going through something that I feel like it would be better for me to move.”

The player is currently in the Bafana Bafana camp preparing for the upcoming 2022 Fifa World Cup qualifiers against Zimbabwe and Ghana.

He has been appointed as Bafana vice-captain and will be deputising SuperSport United goalkeeper Ronwen Williams. 

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