CAPE TOWN – Mamelodi Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane got in a jab at Kaizer Chiefs by insisting that winning the Shell Helix Ultra Cup on Saturday “doesn’t mean nothing”.
Masandawana produced a comfortable 2-1 victory over the Amakhosi, who had won the Maize Cup last weekend.
Previously under Steve Komphela, Chiefs were the butt of local soccer fans’ jokes for winning a number of pre-season tournaments, but no ‘real’ silverware.
SA football supporters call these trophies ‘plastic cups’, and it seems as if Sundowns mentor Mosimane agrees with them.
“But all in all, you cannot be too boastful as this is a pre-season cup – this doesn’t mean anything. We need to get back to catch a rhythm, and I’m very happy to give the other guys a chance to play,” he said in a post-match TV interview.
“It doesn’t mean nothing, this cup, it doesn’t mean nothing. There are important cups to come.”
Of course, there is some value to playing a few games before the MTN8 and league kick off, and one man who would’ve been delighted was New Zealand striker Jeremy Brockie.
The Kiwi international finally broke his duck by scoring the opener, while Themba Zwane grabbed the second with a cool finish.
Bernard Parker brought some respectability to the scoreboard with a stoppage-time header for Chiefs.
“It’s unbelievable. I mean, we ask ourselves… We brought him here to score goals, and I told him ‘Just keep going, keep going’, he’ll break the ice. And he broke the ice and he worked his socks off,” Mosimane said of Brockie.
“He ran for everything, I’m so happy for him. He deserves to get a run again, but otherwise, again – pre-season, it doesn’t mean nothing, this cup.”
The Sundowns boss wasn’t too pleased that his team conceded the Parker goal, but was happy about the performance of some of his players.
“I’m very impressed with the discipline in the game. The tactical organisation, and I’m happy for the guys who haven’t been playing to take the opportunity. Especially for Anthony Laffor, we’ve been waiting for him, important player. He looked revived,” he said.
“But I’m happy for our youngster who came from our academy, Mkhulise ‘Pitso’ (S’phelele Mkhulise) – a top player, very good player. In the starting line-up, not afraid.
“I dropped nine players from the team that played in Togo. So, the guys took the opportunity, and also happy for Lyle Lakay coming in at left back – showing good signs. Kennedy Mweene was brilliant on crosses.
“Disappointed in the goal, should’ve been 2-0, to be honest. Lack of concentration. But all in all, it’s good to have everybody getting a run.”