Top European coaches admire and copy Sundowns, says Rulani Mokwena

21 September 2023 - 18:52
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Mamelodi Sundowns coach Rulani Mokwena during an MTN8 semifinal press conference at the PSL headquarters in Parktown on Thursday.
Mamelodi Sundowns coach Rulani Mokwena during an MTN8 semifinal press conference at the PSL headquarters in Parktown on Thursday.
Image: Lefty Shivambu/Gallo Images

Mamelodi Sundowns coach Rulani Mokwena says their dominant performances in the Premier Soccer League (PSL) have turned top European coaches into admirers and highly respected bosses are even “in a way” copying what his side does on the pitch.

Sundowns have unleashed their beast mode since Mokwena took over the coaching reins as solo head coach almost a year ago and he is yet to suffer a league defeat.

The Pretoria giants look to be on course to win the DStv Premiership title for the seventh time in succession in 2023-2024 after their 1-0 victory on Wednesday over Orlando Pirates, a side tipped to be a serious challenger for top honours.

Sundowns are on 21 points after seven games, with Pirates 14 points behind, but the Soweto giants have two games in hand.

Speaking to media before Sundowns’ second leg of the MTN8 semifinal against Kaizer Chiefs at Lucas Moripe Stadium on Saturday, Mokwena said their game model has earned admirers beyond African borders.

The coach said that adds pressure on his side not to let their foot off the pedal as they have a lot of people watching them.

“What we try to do is to serve the game of football and maybe you are not as privileged as I am in that sense,” Mokwena said on Thursday.

“But if you understand the enormity of the reach in relation to the appreciation of the game we play and things we try to do on the football pitch, the emails and messages I’m receiving from top coaches from European about how they admire and even in a way copy some of the things we are doing.

“That signifies the magnitude of the blessings we have and for sure, as they say, blessings and burdens are cousins.

“The blessing of that comes with the burden of having to maintain that and to keep our feet firmly on the ground and stay focused and continue to improve to be better.”

Sundowns go into the second leg against ailing Amakhosi, who lost 1-0 to SuperSport United on Wednesday, with a slender advantage from their 1-1 draw in the first leg at FNB Stadium.

The Brazilians could progress to the final if the second leg in Atteridgeville ends in a goalless draw.


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