Robson Sharuko Senior Sports Editor
KHAMA BILLIAT has joined a group of football stars — including Argentine ace Sergio Aguero — who have splashed their cash on a Range Rover Sport Lumma CLR RS, after the Warriors ace added the SUV to his fleet this week.
However, the car, worth around R2 549 950 (about US$170 660), has divided opinion on Twitter, with some praising Billiat for his latest acquisition.
Others have been arguing the Kaizer Chiefs star should be investing in property which could provide him with regular income when his career comes to an end.
Billiat turns 29 in three weeks’ time and is in the second year of a three-year contract, with the option of an extension for a further year, which made him the highest-paid footballer in the South African Premiership.
He has been linked with a possible return to his old club, Mamelodi Sundowns, but the Amakhosi hierarchy has been insisting Billiat will stay at Chiefs.
His decision to splash over R2.5 million on a 2019 Ranger Rover Sport Lumma CLR RS has sparked debate with one group saying footballers like Billiat should, at this phase of their career, be preparing for life after football and that demands investing in portfolios like property.
Others, though, say he has a right to live his life in the fast lane.
This means he will be driving the same car as England defender Harry Maguire, who completed a world record £80 million, the biggest transfer involving a defender in the history of the game, when he moved from Leicester City to Manchester United this week.
Another Manchester-based superstar, City’s Aguero, who earns £250 000 a week, also has a Ranger Rover Lumma CLR RS in his garage to add to his Ferrari GTC4 LUSSO, valued at £250 000, a Lamborghini Aventador valued at £270 000 and a Nissan GT-R valued at £90 000.
Ivorian footballer Wilfried Bony and Kevin-Prince Boateng, the Ghanaian international, also have the Range Rover Sport Lumma CLR RS cars while South African television personality, Boity Thulo, also caused a social media stir in June when she announced she had acquired one for herself and named it Esther.
“It really looks like a Range Rover Sport on steroids, but the engine is actually standard – although, to be fair, the donor car has no shortage of get-up-and-go,’’ a car dealer website says.
It has a 5-litre “supercharged petrol V8 model, which produces 385kW and 625Nm – enough to get the SUV from 0-100km/h in just 5.3 seconds.’’
Billiat’s super car, coming just days after Nyasha Mushekwi announced he had splashed US$120 000 on a passenger bus to be used by his old club CAPS United, has caused a huge debate with some fighting in the Kaizer Chiefs forward’s corner while others are questioning his decision.
Warriors super fan, Alvin “Aluvah’’ Zhakata, said Billiat should be left to do as he pleases.
“So, @khama_billiat11 flaunts his new baby and sadza-eaters-cum-financial-advisors demand title deeds for the land he has bought – stands and houses. My people, I surrender, Congrats zvako Gaucho.’’
And, here is what others said on Twitter:
‘’I would rather you drive a sponsor’s car for now. That car is neither an asset, nor an investment. Focus Khama, focus. Always love you, and wish you well in your fledgling career.’’
‘’Why mustn’t he drive a car that he wants if he can afford it…and who says if one buys a good car they have lost focus. Football is his job. You have your own and if you can’t afford such, don’t discourage those who can.’’
Packo Jeans @PackoJeans
‘’Yes, it’s his money but advice remains that, just advice, and he can take it or leave. But the point shouldn’t be lost that a lot of footballers are known to live large only to fall on hard times immediately after their playing career is over due to poor financial planning.’’
Takudzwa Mafuwa @apollos_king
‘’Saka if has side businesses and a house at the side he has to show the world kuti honai business rangu what do you think, he doesn’t owe anyone an explanation, congrats Khama.’’
Tumisho Matabane @TumishoMataban1
‘’Hard work always pay. Congratulations boy, jealous down.’’
‘’Some of these comments really reveal how dark people’s hearts are. Homeboy just prays, plays soccer, spends his money and minds his own business. But all the devils spawn with dark hearts refuse to see him shine. Way to go Gaucho. What a beast.’’
‘’That’s what differentiate real boys from pretenders, beautiful machine.’’
‘’All that from kicking away a rubber ball and spending half the time trying to get it back.’’
Nhlanhla Dhladhla @nhlanhla_Dhla2
‘’Congratulations! Khama, well deserved! Enjoy the fruits of your labour and be safe.’’
‘’Nice wheels…it was gonna be nice if it was a picture of a new school in your community.’’
Economist Chikata @svongoro
‘’At your level haticha pemberere mota sonny. We want mansions and proper investments. Come on chibaba you can do it. Haikona kudhakwa nenzwisa. Chat a new course for upcoming footballers looking up to you.’’
FC Platinum Supporters
‘’Congrats @khama_Billiat11, don’t forget we still want you to retire at FC Platinum, especially now you got that Range.’’
Never Government @NeverGovernment
‘’Congras Khama. Please make use of this hard-earned cash in real estate and production-based investments, be it agriculture, transport or mining. I grew up in Chitungwiza and know a lot of former soccer star players who used to parade these toys in but it’s now history.’’;
Sabata Hlalele @77Sabata
‘’Foreigners who live in your land will gain more and more power, while you gradually lose yours. They will have money to lend you but you will have none to lend them. In the end, they will be your rulers.’’
‘’Black people we have a disease called jealousy. Why do you feel you have to lecture about his soccer form on a car post, how to invest well, are you a financial advisor? What have you done yourself with your salary? Congratulations Khama.’’