Newly-signed Khama Billiat can afford to allow himself a big smile when he picks up his first pay packet at Kaizer Chiefs.
The Zimbabwean international reportedly turned down the opportunity to further his career with Zamaleck of Egypt and other European teams preferring a dance with the Soweto giants.
Questions have also been raised whether the former Ajax Cape Town striker should not have taken the opportunity to test himself abroad‚ rather than in a league he has already mastered.
However, those close to Billiat said the forward made a good financial deal that will see him become the Premier League’s highest earner.
Though South Africa’s monthly wages aren’t as eye-watering and vast as those dished out in the European leagues, Billiat who was earning between R350 000-R400 000 at Mamelodi Sundowns is poised for big bucks.
Amakhosi are said to have tabled their bid with an annual salary of $500 000 (R6 million) although it fell below the $700 000 (R9,4 million) that the player demanded.
A source close to the player told Business Weekly that it was pointless for Billiat to consider a European deal when the Naturena-based club tabled a better offer.
“It’s not about his failure to secure a move to overseas. It was a difficult offer he couldn’t resist,” the source said.
“It was not an overnight decision for him. Considering that there were many offers from Europe, he opted to return to the ABSA premiership for a reason. It was about his financial stability too,” he said.
“Considering what they offered. He will be the highest paid player, not at Chiefs but in the Premier league. He wanted that assurance and Kaizer Chiefs were also keen to full fill his demands,” he added.
According to a 2016 study carried out by a South Africa online magazine, research from 2015 showed that the average monthly wage of a PSL player to be R44 000 a month.
Players like Itumeleng Khune, Kaizer Chiefs: (R480 000), Teko Modise, Cape Town City: (R450 000), Ejike Uzoenyi, Bidvest Wits: (R450 000), Steven Pienaar, Bidvest Wits: (R425 000), Siphiwe Tshabalala, Kaizer Chiefs & Anthony Laffor, Mamelodi Sundows: R380 000 were among some of the high earners, the survey said.
Billiat is expected to be one the big game-changers for Amakhosi this season, who are coming off three barren seasons without silverware.
The Zimbabwe international, along with Buya Msuthu left-back Letlhogonolo Mirwa and Malagasy midfielder Andriamirado Andrianarimanana, are Kaizer Chiefs’ new signings.
Billiat joins countrymen Willard Katsande and Teenage Hadebe at Amakhosi ahead of the 2018/19 season.