Vilakazi believes her experience will come in handy at new Spanish club

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Banyana Banyana defender Nothando Vilakazi says she is pleased to make a return to European football.

Vilakazi believes her experience in a Banyana Banyana shirt will be beneficial for her new Spanish club, EDF Logroño Femenino, who are competing in the Primera Iberdrola.

With over 130 Banyana Banyana international caps, the tough-tackling Vilakazi is an experienced campaigner. She made appearances at four Africa Women’s Cup of Nations (AWCON), the London 2012 and Rio 2016 Olympic Games, featured at South Africa’s debut FIFA Women’s World Cup last year and won several COSAFA Women’s Championships.

At club level, the 31-year-old defender played in the UEFA Women’s Champions League in her short stint with Lithuanian side Gintra Universitetas last summer.

The Banyana star was part of the Rimantas Viktoravicius’s team that clinched the Amber Cup champions and netted three goals in eight games. Picture: Gintra Universitetas.

“I am very excited to be joining the team, this is definitely a move I have been waiting for,” said the former Palace Super Falcons and Tshwane University of Technology (TUT Ladies) left-back.

“I believe as a hard-working, reliable and experienced defender the team is going to benefit from me as much as I am going to benefit as well. I cannot wait for this exciting new journey.

“I am happy, and I am always open to gaining new football knowledge from the coaches and my teammates and also learning the beautiful Spanish language,” she added.

Vilakazi, affectionately known as ‘Vivo’, is the third South African woman star to join a Spanish top-flight outfit after Ode Fulutudilu and Jermaine Seoposenwe enjoyed stints at Malaga and Real Betis respectively.

In a statement, EDF logrono said: ‘The South African player has committed to the Riojan entity for the next campaign and will thus strengthen the defensive line of those of Gerardo García León.

“The new tenant on the left side of the EDF Logroño is characterised by having a glove on her left boot, a powerful left-footer with a long run, a sash on the mark and with great precision in her passes and centres to the area, seeking the finish off of her teammates.”

Vilakazi will be under the command of the first-team coach Gerardo García León for the start of the pre-season in preparation for the upcoming Primera Iberdrola 2020/2021 season.

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By Tokelo Martin Mokhesi 

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