- Former Everton star and Bafana captain Steven Pienaar says age is the main reason why players fail to make an impact on the PSL once they return to South Africa
- He also pointed to a gulf in playing style between European and South African clubs
- Pienaar said most overseas-based players returned to the PSL when they were past their prime
Former Everton star and Bafana captain Steven Pienaar said the main reason why most players returning to South Africa following overseas stints failed to make a significant impact on the PSL was age.
Pienaar said most players were past their prime, which he said was age 22 to 32, by the time they returned from their overseas endeavours.
He also pointed to a gulf in the playing styles which exists between European and South African clubs as a reason that many players failed to make an impact on the PSL once they returned.
Briefly.co.za gathered that Pienaar was released by Bidvest Wits earlier this year after he was signed by the club last season.
Pienaar spent 16 successful years playing in the English Premier League for Everton and was expected to make a significant impact for his new side in the PSL.
Sport24.com reported that Pienaar just returned from Ireland where he enrolled in for a UEFA A coaching license which is just one step below a pro-license.
Pienaar revealed that he wanted to pass his knowledge and experience about football onto the younger generation and was considering coaching at a community level.
Pienaar said he had no ambitions at this stage to become a top flight-coach.
His former Everton club has already engaged with him about the possibility of coaching its Under-15 and Under-18 teams.
Pienaar is one of a rare few South African players who has spent most of their professional careers overseas. The current trend is for players to make a name for themselves in the PSL before accepting a short contract to play overseas before making a return.
One example of this current Bafana Bafana star Andile Jali who returned to the PSL after spending three years in Europe. Jali was the hottest free agent in recent times with all three of the PSL’s big teams chasing his signature.
Pienaar said South African players preferred the comfort of playing at home which was made possible by the good salary packages offered by local sides.
Pienaar said players from the rest of Africa pushed harder for overseas contracts because they did not have the same comfort in their home leagues.
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