I have no issue with Rakhale - Mokwena
Rhulani Mokwena has cleared the air about his relationship with former Orlando Pirates dribbling wizard Thabo Rakhale.
The Chippa United coach has made it clear that he doesn’t have any personal vendetta against Rakhale. When Mokoena joined the Chilli Boys, it was announced that Rakhale was on his way out of the Port Elizabeth outfit.
“The notion was that Thabo Rakhale and Diamond Thopola left when Rhulani was at Pirates and now that he is at Chippa United they will be leaving and that he has something personal against these players. That’s extreme nonsense,” Mokwena said.
“I have a very good relationship with Rakhale. Thabo Rakhale has a contract that is expiring (at Chippa). I’ve had several discussions with him about what he wants to do for the future. The club has offered a contract extension but the player needs to discuss and come to terms. It is absolute nonsense that Rakhale is on his way out because of me.”
Thopola was also reported to be heading for the exit door after the arrival of Mokwena.
“Thopola is on loan from Pirates. How do you terminate a loan with a player who is injured and has been out for two months prior to me arriving and all of sudden I terminate the contract? It doesn’t work like that. It is unethical and it is something that I would never do. That is it,” Mokwena elaborated.
In a previous interview with Independent Media, Mokwena did indicate that he had nothing to do with mass player exodus at the club.
“With (Lehlohonolo) Maselesa, of course there were issues inside about performances and his weight (struggles). Those were already on the table from the previous coach (Norman Mapeza) and if you look at the data, he only played one match, which was the game against AmaZulu, prior to my arrival. Those are things that I needed to have a discussion about with him,” Mokwena said.
Mokwena and Meshack Maphangule collaborated during his stint with the Buccaneers. They are both on loan at Chippa.
“I like Maphangule. I call him Isco (after the Real Madrid midfielder). He is a very intelligent football player. When we were at Pirates, he was one of the players that we recommended that he should be signed when he was available. He’s got very good qualities from a football perspective.
“If you know the demographics and social geographic diversity of our country, players that come from the north generally struggle at the big clubs because of their personality. It is about character trait. He needed a longer time to adapt to the pressure and the environment of Pirates, but that doesn’t take away that he is a very good player,” Mokwena said.