- Nato signs a one and a half year deal with Rollers
- Nato turned down offers from Asia to make Rollers move
Township Rollers have opted to register new signing Ofentse Nato in the January transfer window to avoid a re-occurrence of the registration saga that almost cost them the league title a year ago.
Rollers are within their rights to register the player immediately because his international clearance has been processed but the club would rather register his transfer with the Botswana Premier League next month in a bid to leave no room for complaints from other clubs.
The main bone of contention in 2016 was that rival clubs were of the view that Nato was not supposed to be registered outside the transfer window as they felt Rollers were given an “unfair advantage”.
Nato joined Rollers in the 2015/2016 season towards January, months later rival clubs lodged complaints questioning the registration of the player alongside his team-mate Terrence Mandaza.
The opposing clubs stated that Nato should have been registered with the Players Status Committee first but Rollers argued that as an international player Nato could be registered at any time and that they used the BPL to register.
The case rumbled on and it was eventually forwarded to the Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS), while locally a championship deciding play-off was organized to determine the outright league winner as second placed Mochudi Centre Chiefs were at the heart of the protest, they could have also benefited had the case been ruled against Rollers.
The complex nature of the Nato saga led many to believe that the midfielder would, most likely, never return to local football again as his name had been tarnished, somewhat unfairly according to his agent Paul Mitchell.
This time around Rollers, still adamant that they registered him correctly in 2015, will register him for the CAF Champions League before the December 31 deadline and proceed to register him with the BPL after January 1.
Nato has signed for Rollers in a one and a half year deal as the club’s spokesperson Bafana Pheto confirmed to Gazette Sport. “We have signed a one and a half year deal with Nato, we struck an agreement last week. The registration process has already started, his international clearance is ready because he is now an outright free agent after ending his spell in India. We are also registering him for the CAF Champions League, we hope that his presence will help us reach the group stages. We believe his registration was done the right way in his previous spell and we are going to do things procedurally again,” Pheto stated.
Nato’s agent, Mitchell, briefly revealed to this publication that Nato had offers to play in Asia. The agent is hopeful that his client’s latest transfer will not be as drama filled as the previous spell.