‘Playing against TS Galaxy now is torture’: Sundowns coach Mokwena after tempestuous Mbombela clash

22 May 2024 - 10:00
By Mahlatse Mphahlele
Mamelodi Sundowns coach Rulani Mokwena says he doesn't enjoy playing against TS Galaxy.
Image: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix Mamelodi Sundowns coach Rulani Mokwena says he doesn't enjoy playing against TS Galaxy.

As expected, the 1-1 DStv Premiership clash between champions Mamelodi Sundowns and TS Galaxy boiled over in Mbombela Stadium on Tuesday night because of strained relations between the teams.

Over the past few months there has been a widely publicised war of words between TS Galaxy coach Sead Ramović and his Sundowns counterpart Rulani Mokwena. 

Hours before the match, TS Galaxy confirmed they have approached the high court regarding the alleged defamatory comments made by Mokwena against Ramović recently. 

Reacting to the share of the spoils, which has left Sundowns on course to go the entire season without defeat with one match to go against Cape Town City on Saturday, Mokwena said he doesn’t enjoy playing against TS Galaxy. 

“There is not much to say about the game. I am not involved in football for these type of matches,” said Mokwena. 

“I don’t want to speak too much about the match. The Tash [Tashreeq Matthews] incident in the first half is a clear penalty and the Siyabonga Mabena incident in the second half is a clear penalty. 

“So many fouls went against us. Marcelo Allende gets stamped on his hands and he gets a yellow. They score and the whole bench jump into our faces and show disrespect. 

“I don’t like that, I am not involved in football for that. I love football for friendship, for memories, the purity of the game and the joy it brings to people. Playing TS Galaxy at the moment is torture, that I don’t enjoy.” 

There is a strong possibility of their matches spilling over into conflict next season and Mokwena said he is only worried about his team going forward. 

“I don’t worry about TS Galaxy, I have to worry about Sundowns because I am employed by Sundowns. Even with the feelings I have, I have to be proud of my players because it was a difficult game for them. 

“It was tough emotionally and physically but they dug deep and they showed incredible mentality and that is the feeling I want to leave Mbombela with. I want to leave Mbombela with pride, gratitude and appreciation for the efforts and the hard work of these special Mamelodi Sundowns players. 

“I am proud of the mentality they showed, even with Aubrey Modiba I could see he was struggling for legs but he was aggressive to get the ball into the box and give the assist.”