Stanley Nwabali: Nigeria international open on Kaizer Chiefs move, but will Amakhosi pay the hefty price?

The custodian is keen on plying trade at a bigger club once the Chilli Boys’ price tag is met

Since the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations, Nigeria international goalkeeper Stanley Nwabali has been in the spotlight owing to his heroics that handed his country silverware with the hosts claiming the gold.

It explains why the 27-year-old Chippa United custodian has been linked with a move to a bigger team ahead of the 2024/25 season.

In the just-concluded campaign, Nwabali played 29 games for the Chilli Boys across all competitions and went on to keep 12 clean sheets.

Will Nwabali solve Chiefs goalkeeping problems amid Khune's uncertain future?

At the start of the season, Brandon Petersen was Amakhosi's preferred starter ahead of Bruce Bvuma and veteran keeper Itumeleng Khune.

However, repeated mistakes by Petersen saw him get demoted, with Khune – who had extended his stay at the club by a year, preferred to replace him ahead of Bvuma. The 36-year-old Khune suffered an unexpected turn of events after being caught up in a disciplinary breach and was eventually suspended.

It explains why Nwabali, who is eyed by several teams abroad, has been severally linked with Amakhosi who are expected to let Khune leave after his contract expires.

“There is interest in France and Saudi Arabia. There is no surprise because of his performance during the Afcon tournament in Ivory Coast,” Nwabali's agent Mohammed Lawal told SNL24.

“I have only seen [Chiefs links] in newspapers. I cannot comment on anything regarding local interest, please speak to the [Chippa United] chairman.”

Nwabali is keen on the Premier Soccer League stay, but can Chiefs afford him?

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The Super Eagles keeper is currently with the Nigeria national team preparing for the 2026 Fifa World Cup qualifier to be played in Uyo on June 7.

When asked about his future, Nwabali didn't hesitate to share his preference, “The transfer window is going to open soon but for me, I wish to take a step [forward| I don’t know if it will be South Africa or Europe,” the goalkeeper said as quoted by Siya Gijana.

“I played well for [Chippa] this season, they also wished me to go play in a bigger team. Even if it’s South Africa or Europe I will play. I’m not saying goodbye yet, most big teams are looking for me, and most people are looking for me.

“Football is a business, if the chairman says this is the highest bidder I will go for it, I don’t have a specific club like Chiefs, [Orlando] Pirates, or [Mamelodi] Sundowns.”

Chippa have put a R30 million price tag on Nwabali's head which might fend off potential suitors in Mzansi.

Stanley Nwabali: Nigeria international open on Kaizer Chiefs move, but will Amakhosi pay the hefty price?
Willis Sob

Willis Sob is an experienced journalist who has been in the game since 2009, covering major assignments around the continent.
His hunger for African football is unmatched, always getting the best angles and facts to feed the fans and quench their thirst.