Glasgow Rangers have completed the signing of Bongani Zungu on a season-long loan from French side Amiens, finally bringing one of the longest-running transfer sagas in Scottish football to an end, but it may be too little, too late…
According to Sky Sports, Rangers boss Steven Gerrard had made signing a midfielder his top priority in the summer.
And Zungu has arrived at Ibrox after first bursting onto the scene at Mamelodi Sundowns.
He won back-to-back league titles at the Loftus Versfeld Stadium before moving to the Portuguese league with Vitoria Guimaraes.
The South Africa international has won 24 caps for his country so far, having made five appearances in the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.
Zungu had emerged as Gerrard’s top target at the start of the summer window, following a campaign featuring five clean sheets in 24 Ligue 1 games last term, via Transfermarkt. Sadly this wasn’t enough to stop Amiens being relegated from the French first division.
The South African only featured for 98 minutes of football in Ligue 2 with Amiens manager Luke Elsner leaving him out of the squad entirely for the first four games in a row.
Conflicting reports seemed to suggest that Rangers were on the ropes with several stating that a strict lockdown in South Africa delayed transfer proceedings, but they finally managed to get the deal done by the end of deadline day.
He has joined Ianis Hagi, Leon Balogun, Calvin Bassey, Kemar Roofe, Cedric Itten and Jon McLaughlin at Ibrox in the end and has given Gerrard exactly what he has wanted all along.
However, he may have arrived too late to start the crucial upcoming match against Celtic, as the eleventh-hour nature of the negotiations were always going to cause problems for the preparations.
The 27-year-old, who was at one stage valued at £3.6m by the French side earlier in the transfer window, will now reunite with the rest of the Bafana Bafana during the international break. South Africa face Namibia and Zambia in international friendlies over the next few weeks.
He will therefore have very little time to train with his new Gers teammates and may miss the Old Firm derby as a result as he may not be ready in time with the fixture scheduled at the end of the international break.
It may be a case of too much, too soon and that could cost Rangers dear as we all known the importance of these games when it comes to deciding which half of Glasgow the league title goes to.