JOHANNESBURG - Pitso Mosimane opened up on his coaching philosophy after he was announced as the Absa Premiership Coach of the Month for December.
The Mamelodi Sundowns’ coach was part of a panel that was dominated by the Brazilians’ players as the Tshwane side collected every award on offer. Percy Tau was unanimously voted as the Player of the Month for December and his captain Hlompho Kekana took home November’s Goal of the Month accolade for his strike against Orlando Pirates in his own half. Sundowns picked up speed in December after a slow start to end the year sitting at the summit.
Mosimane had told the club’s fans to brace themselves for turbulence as Sundowns struggled to reclaim for form after playing football non-stop for three years. The Brazilians seems to have weathered the storm, but aren’t out of it completely.
Sundowns hold a three-point lead at the top of the league table that could have been larger had they not lost three of their last four games. Even during the club's struggles, Sundowns haven't changed their way of playing in search of a quick fix.
“I always tell the players that the way we play is the way we play,” Mosimane said. “If someone is blindfolded and we change kits with our opponents, I want them to still be able to see Sundowns even without us wearing our jersey.
"If we can’t reach that point, than we don’t know how we play. Then we don’t have a philosophy. Then it means you are playing according to what the opponents are doing, you’re taking short cuts.
"Sometimes you win doing that. But I believe in our philosophy, the way we play. We’ve been playing like this since I have been at Sundowns. But it doesn’t mean having a philosophy means you won’t lose games. You will lose some of the game."
Mosimane continued: “But it is important that even when you lose you play the way you normally play. Even when you’re desperate, you have to believe in the way you play because it’s easy to kick the ball forward and score. How many times can you do that? When you have opponents who are strong in the air then you can’t do that…
"You have to play to your strength. We sign players who suit the way we play. We don’t sign a player because they are good. There are so many players who are good but they don’t fit our style. I signed 13 players when I arrived, a big number but I had to change the team to be the way I want them to play. Since then I haven’t signed so many players at once.”