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Professionalism, work ethic is what makes Peter Shalulile stand-out from the rest, says Manqoba Mngqithi

Peter Shalulile of Mamelodi Sundowns celebrates his goal with Khuliso Mudau. Photo: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

Peter Shalulile of Mamelodi Sundowns celebrates his goal with Khuliso Mudau. Photo: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

Published Apr 13, 2022

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Johannesburg - Mamelodi Sundowns’ co-coach Manqoba Mnqgithi says Peter Shalulile’s level of professionalism and work ethic is what makes him stand head and shoulders above the rest, not that he’s necessarily the most talented player.

On Tuesday afternoon, Shalulile engraved his name in the books of Sundowns and South African football.

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He became the first Sundowns’ player to score 21 league goals in the same season in the club’s PSL history after scoring a hat-trick in their 6-0 demolishing of Golden Arrows in the DStv Premiership at home, Loftus Versfeld Stadium.

The Namibian striker also beat Siyabonga Nomvethe’s 10-year-old record of 21 league goals in the same season, while his four goals shy of Collins Mbesuma’s 16-year record of 25 league goals in the same season.

Shalulile is also the first player in the history of the Premiership to score back-to-back hat-tricks, having racked up his first of the season in their 4-2 win over Swallows FC in Soweto.

But in the midst of all the historic achievements, Mngqithi doesn’t believe that Shalulile is the most talented No. 9, instead, he says, his level of professionalism and work ethic drive him to be the best.

“The gods of football also look at how much application you put into the game and the level of professionalism. He runs the hardest in the team and works very hard,” Mngqithi said.

“Others would say he’s lucky because when you find him in a position where he taps in, scores with one touch or with that little header, it looks like this guy is very fortunate.

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“But for me, when an opportunity meets hard-work a lot of people will say you are lucky. And that’s what happens with Peter, he works very hard.

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“I don’t think he’s one of the most, most, very talented players. But because he gives his heart and soul to his game, craft, that’s why God gives him what he’s good at.”

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Sundowns’ win over Arrows meant that they are only five points away from winning their record fifth title in a row. They have five games left to achieve that feat.

Gaston Sirino and substitutes Kermit Erasmus and Pavol Safranko were the three other players that got on the scoresheet in Hatfield as Sundowns scored 22 goals in their last five matches.

Downs will be eager to take that scoring spree to their first leg match of the CAF Champions League quarter-final, where they'll face Petro de Luanda in Angola on Saturday evening.

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