Why Maritzburg United released Keagan Buchanan

Maritzburg United chairman Farouk Kadodia has explained the club’s shock decision to release midfielder Keagan Buchanan despite fighting relegation. Kadodia said the reason they terminated the 29-year-old’s contract was that he lost his focus at the Team of Choice.

With the club fighting relegation, many have questioned Maritzburg’s decision to let go of one of their key players, especially for free, but Kadodia said they didn’t have a choice. “I think it is because of one reason; the important thing is that the boy lost his focus on his job here, and he got his contract coming to an end [in June],” Kadodia told Sowetan yesterday.

“So, we need a person who can come and fight and that’s what is important. We couldn’t guarantee a player a contract, but we are fighting relegation that’s the issue we have, you know. Last season, he played well, but this time he was not focused, so we had to make a decision, unfortunately.”

Injury-prone Buchanan joined Maritzburg midway through the 2019/20 season from Kaizer Chiefs. He used that opportunity to regain his full fitness and found his groove again.

This season, he has made 16 appearances in all competitions, but his form dropped compared to last season, and with his contract coming to an end in June, Maritzburg could not wait until his contract expired. 

The KwaZulu-Natal side bolstered their squad with two European players, German goalkeeper Marcel Engelhardt and Dusan Stevic, a Serbian defender, before the window closed on Monday.

And Kadodia remains confident that they will do well with the squad they have assembled despite losing three key players during the transfer window in Rushine de Reuck, Pogiso Sanoka and Buchanan.

“We have to fight, and I believe the team will do that and survive relegation this season. But we will see. The players we have brought, I believe they will add value to us and in the league. We are excited to have them, and we are looking forward to it.”

Maritzburg are 15th on the DStv Premiership table with nine points after the halfway mark. Source: Sowetan

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