Brighton & Hove Albion signed Percy Tau from South African club Mamelodi Sundowns and immediately loaned him out to Belgian side Union SG last year.
The forward made over 30 appearances in all competitions for the Belgian side, scoring 13 goals and registering 13 assists.
Speaking to Belgian outlet DeMorgen, the South African international stressed he was fully aware the Seagulls’ plans for him, even before he joined them.
“I knew from the outset that Brighton were going to send me out on loan. It didn’t matter [to which club]. I just wanted to play,” he explained.
“Look, I felt a lot of love at Union. The coach and the players made me better. I got to learn things I wouldn’t have learned in South Africa. I am glad I experienced the process.”
“I will forever be grateful to Brighton & Hove Albion for giving me the chance to come and play football in Europe, which meant everything to me. When I would get the work permit wasn’t the most important thing [for me].”
The South African international did not obtain the work permit to play for the Seagulls. This forced Graham Potter’s side to send Tau out on loan for second season in a row.
Rangers, Mechelen, Zulte Waregem and other sides were interested in the attacker, but he ended up joining Club Brugge on a temporary deal.
Tau, who was a part of his national team squad at the 2019 African Cup of Nations, only wanted to make sure that he continues his experience in Europe.
“For a long time, I asked to be left alone. My focus was on the Africa Cup of Nations. Afterwards, just tell me the name of my new team and I pack my things,” Tau said
“The only thing that I would have found difficult was a return to South Africa. I came to Europe with just one reason, one dream: to play in the Champions League. It didn’t matter with which team.”
Thankfully for him, Club Brugge are in contention to play in the Champions League group stages this season.
Hopefully, his dream will now come true.