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HomeSouth African SoccerMokwena insists Sundowns' season was a reason to celebrate

Mokwena insists Sundowns’ season was a reason to celebrate

If you cast your memory to the 2021/2022 season where Mamelodi Sundowns won all the domestic trophies on offer – the DSTV Premiership, MTN8 and Nedbank Cup – then one would be forgiven to question if the 2022/2023 season was a resounding success.

Sundowns coach Rulani Mokwena is adamant, however, that Sundowns‘ season was a triumph, even though Orlando Pirates dislodged them as Nedbank Cup and MTN8 champions, and in spite of the agony of being knocked out in the semifinals of the Caf Champions League.

“You can wake me up at 2am, when I’m still sleepy and tired, you can ask me the same question and I would say yes because I’m proud of what the players have done,” Mokwena said.

“I look at what we achieved – normally a team that holds a clean sheet record and concedes the least number goals and has the best defensive record in the country, (that) is a team that defends deep and doesn’t have ball but we have been the best defensive side while being the best offensively and that is difficult. The type of football we played and injuries we had to manage, not a lot people speak about it.”

Missing players

He continued: “We had a players like Lebo (Maboe) who played almost every game the previous season but didn’t feature, we had Riva (Rivaldo Coetzee) who played more games the previous season but didn’t feature. Peter Shalulile missed half of the season but still finished on 23 goals -t he only came back in December after missing the first couple of months of the season.

“We have also done it by giving youngsters a chance like Cassius (Mailula) and Ntando (Nkosi). We have ticked so many boxes. We know we have to tick the box of winning and we want to win every trophy and every match but the disappointment of not winning trophies shouldn’t outshine the fact we have done some incredible things this season and played some incredible football. I’m proud to be part of this club and proud of the vision and I’m proud to be a member of this team, working as hard as we all do and making a contribution towards the success of this club.”

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