Now the Cape Town Spurs coach, Shaun Bartlett is one of the most recognisable figures in South African football and remains one of the country’s greatest ever players.
Bartlett began his playing career with Cape Town Spurs as a promising prospect in South African football. Making over 100 appearances for the club, Bartlett quickly
demonstrated that finding his way to goal was second nature.
The local legend then tried his hand at Major League Soccer and plied his trade for both Colorado Rapids and MetroStars between 1996 and 1997, scoring 10 goals in 49 games.
In being loaned back to Spurs, Bartlett soon found himself on a plane where he signed for Swiss side FC Zurich.
Scoring 41 goals in 91 games, Bartlett’s playing career began taking off into the right direction. In 2000, Bartlett earned himself a massive opportunity at playing against some of the best players in the world after signing for Charlton Athletic on loan. A year later, Bartlett’s move was made permanent and the former striker began providing fans with highlight reel quality goals.
In fact, Bartlett won the Goal of the Season award during the 2000/01 season after scoring an impressive volley against Leicester City in the Premier League.
Bartlett knew his way around the penalty area, which is seen in the numbers accumulated in his playing career. The powerful forward scored 24 goals in 123 Premier League games, while he also managed to net 23 goals in 67 Swiss League appearances. Upon returning to South Africa, Bartlett signed for Kaizer Chiefs, scoring 12 goals in 44 games for Amakhosi.
For Bafana Bafana, Bartlett is South Africa’s second highest goal scorer in history, scoring 28 goals in 74 appearances. In Barlett’s embryonic coaching career, the 49-year-old had assistant coach stints at clubs such as Golden Arrows, Kaizer Chiefs and TS Galaxy before being appointed as the Urban Warriors mentor.