A look back at Nomvethe’s illustrious career

Striker Siyabonga Nomvethe has added another chapter to his illustrious career by returning home to Durban and signing for AmaZulu from Moroka Swallows.

The attacker was born in KwaMashu, Durban, back in December 1977 and made his first steps into the realm of professional football when he appeared for African Wanderers in the 1997/98 season, having first played for Clermont Blizzards.

A return of 11 goals from 28 appearances in the 97/98 season saw him signed by Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs, where he spent three years and scored an impressive 48 goals in 82 appearances, helping the Amakhosi to numerous honours. He was also the PSL’s Player of the Season for the 1999/2000 campaign.

From 2001 he played for Udinese, Salernitana and Empoli in Italy, as well as Swedish club Djugardens and Danish side Aalborg in an eight-year spell in Europe (which also included a brief period on loan at Orlando Pirates in 2006).

In 2009, Bhele returned to South African football with Moroka Swallows and proceeded to become a Birds legend over the next six and a half years with the Soweto side, scoring 58 goals in 159 top flight appearances for the club.

His form nearly took the Birds to the title in 2011/12 when they were narrowly beaten to glory by Orlando Pirates, but Swallows’ fortunes spiralled downward since that peak and they were relegated at the end of the 2014/15 season.

Nomvethe remained with Swallows despite strong reported interest from the likes of Jomo Cosmos and scored three goals for the Birds in the National First Division before deciding to switch to AmaZulu this month.

In addition to his club achievements, the 38-year-old also represented Bafana Bafana 82 times and scored 16 goals for the national team. He was a part of the squad at four Africa Cup of Nations tournaments, two World Cups and the 2000 Olympics team.

He famously scored the goal which handed South Africa their first victory at the World Cup finals, 1-0 against Slovenia in Korea/Japan 2002.

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