“Cape Town City is delighted to announce the signing of 28 [year-old] South African striker Kermit Romeo Erasmus from Portuguese Primeira Liga side, Vitória Setúbal. Kermit signs a permanent 3 and a half year deal,” the club tweeted on Wednesday.
The former Orlando Pirates and SuperSport United marksman has spent the last three seasons in Europe – in France he played for Stade Rennais and RC Lens, before moving on to Swedish second division club Eskilstuna, and most recently, Portuguese Primeira Liga outfit Vitoria de Setubal.
However, the 28-year-old’s career appeared to have been stagnating due to lack of game time; he made just one substitute appearance in a cup game for Setubal this season, and has only featured in 39 league matches since leaving Pirates.
The Port Elizabeth-born marksman has also fallen down the pecking order in terms of the national team, and Bafana Bafana coach Stuart Baxter recently voiced his concern over the player’s inactivity.
That could all be about to change now as Erasmus links up with Citizens boss Benni McCarthy; South Africa’s all-time leading goal scorer and former Champions League winner desperate to find himself the reliable goal-getter that City have missed, since the departure of Lebogang Manyama two seasons ago.
“The eagle has landed. #WelcomeKermit,” the club tweeted earlier on Wednesday morning, together with a video of Erasmus undergoing a medical and meeting chairman John Comitis and his new manager.
Although several reports have claimed that Erasmus’ arrival is to be accompanied by Tokelo Rantie being shown the exit door, City are yet to confirm this.
Rantie was signed in September, also returning to the country after an overseas stint. But he’s yet to play for the Cape side, reportedly due to weight and off-the-field issues.
The Citizens have made a habit of bringing in players from both Europe and the African continent, including Ayanda Patosi, Bradley Ralani, Peter Leeuwenburgh, Roland Putsche, Edmilson Kateregga, Edmilson Dove, Matthew Rusike, Kuadja Kouadja and Gift Links.
Erasmus will battle it out with Rusike and the club’s leading scorer this season, Siphelele Mthembu (four league goals in 11 games), for a starting berth.