Fri, 25 Sep 2020

"No not again" was the response from Highlands Park supporters after the club known as "The Lions of the North" recently received a huge offer for their Absa Premiership franchise.

The pained response related to the fact that the legendary Highlands had surprisingly sold their PSL franchise in 1982 to Jomo Cosmos, with a name change to Jomo Cosmos - and Highlands spending more than 30 years in the professional soccer wilderness before making an impressive return to major South African soccer some five years ago through the promotion process and with a new regime running the show.

But, for all intents and purposes, another sale is highly unlikely according to co-chairperson Brad Kaftel, who believes Highlands are currently again among the most stable clubs in the country and have had no thoughts of contemplating a sale before an unsolicited major purchase offer landed in their laps.

"Naturally when you receive such a tempting offer you don't toss it aside just like that," added Kaftel, "but we had never given any thought to selling the club since we took over - and that's still how the matter stands, even with all the problems and headaches facing all clubs in the PSL and sport generally because of the coronavirus pandemic."

Kaftel said that apart from the monthly grant of over R2 million Absa Premiership clubs receive from the PSL, Highlands had acquired two additional sponsorships of note and were able to honour all the financial commitments to their players - "even when games came to a halt during the current grim crisis."

As to the resumption of the League this week, Kaftel said Highlands were well positioned to repeat last season's achievement of a "Top Eight" finish, while continuing to strive to regain a status in keeping with "The Lions of the North's" elite position in the former National Football League and the NPSL in the early years of non-racial soccer.

"That's what we truly have in mind right now," he added, "not thinking about what was the surprise offer of selling the club."

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