August 2, 2021

Cape Town City sign former Nigeria under-20 captain Abdul Jeleel Ajagun

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Ajagun follows in the footsteps of his compatriot Victor Obinna, who joined City in September 2017, but played only 12 games and scored just once

Cape Town City have bolstered their midfield with the acquisition of former Nigeria under-20 captain Abdul Jeleel Ajagun.

The news was confirmed on City’s Twitter page on Friday morning, with a short post:

“Cape Town City is delighted to announce the signing of midfielder Abdul Ajagun. The midfielder joins from Belgium Pro League side Kortrijk.”

Ajagun will be handed the number 13 jersey by the Citizens.

He began his career with the academy team of Nigerian club Dolphins FC. He also won the 2010/11 Nigerian Premier League title with Dolphins and later signed for Greek side Panathinaikos FC ahead of the 2013/14 campaign, going on to score on his official debut against Platanias.

An attacking midfielder, Ajagun became a free agent after he was released by Belgian club KV Kortrijk in October 2020. He made just three appearances in the Belgian First Division A for Kortrijk this season.

The Port Harcourt-born player also had loan spells at Greek club Levadiakos FC and Dutch outfit Roda JC. It was at Roda where he had his best return of goals in a league season, scoring five in the 2016/ 17 season in the Dutch top flight.

Ajagun, 27, joins a growing list of foreign-born players at the Mother City club, including goalkeeper Peter Leeuwenburgh (Netherlands), defender Ioannis Potouridis (Greece), winger Charles Zulu (Zambia), striker Justin Shonga (Zambia) and left-back Edmilson Dove (Mozambique).

Dove is however injured and is not expected to play until next season.

Ajagun will compete with the likes of Mduduzi Mdantsane (City’s top scorer this season with eight league goals) as well as Mpho Makola for a place in the starting line-up as an attacking midfielder.

Coach Jan Olde Riekerink’s Citizens side are involved in the Nedbank Cup this weekend – they play last season’s beaten finalists Bloemfontein Celtic at the Cape Town Stadium on Saturday evening (17:00 kick-off)

And if the coach’s comments are anything to go by, it could be a high scoring encounter:

“This is a knockout game so it is not about how many goals you concede, but rather the number of goals you score,” the Dutchman was quoted saying by IOL.

“So long as you score more like AmaZulu did when they recently won 4-3. It is the way we play and sometimes we lose the ball in risky positions.

“We will have to improve when we are in transition so that we can be more effective. Our strength is scoring goals and creating chances.”