Former New England Revolution striker Mkhokheli Dube insists that Minnesota United is the ‘perfect’ destination for Bafana Bafana winger Bongokuhle Hlongwane.
The 21-year-old signed a three-year deal with the Major League Soccer [MLS] side from Maritzburg United this week.
Dube, who helped the ‘Revs’ to the 2008 SuperLiga title, believes the Bafana star has made the right move. Hlongwane has established himself as one of the best young players in South Africa after bursting onto the PSL scene in 2019.
“It’s a good move for the boy because MLS is growing to be one of the best leagues in terms of producing quality players to Europe.
“Just now, New England Revolution sold Canadian international Tajon Buchanan for US$7 million [R110 million] to Club Brugge of Belgium.
“FC Dallas just sold an 18-year-old Ricardo Pepi to Germany side FC Augsburg, and another striker Daryl Dike who is 21 has been sold from Orlando City to West Brom for US$8 million [R126 million],” Dube told FARPost.
Over the last 10 years, the MLS has become increasingly popular. The league garnered the attention of top international talent, brought in significant investments and generated a massive presence on social media.
Dube, who had a stint with AmaZulu in the PSL, believes the remuneration in the MLS will significantly be higher than what local teams pay. “From a financial perspective, it’s a good move as well because there’s a lot of money being channelled into the league,” he said.
The MLS’s current eight-year media deal with ESPN, Fox and Univision has generated an estimated $90 million [R1.4 billion] per year since 2015.
“The league is getting better; the infrastructure is top-notch,” added the 2008 finalist for MLS Rookie of the Year.
He is convinced the Pietermaritzburg star’s game will develop further in the MLS and possibly move to top European leagues.