Sundowns’ three coaching musketeers making their impact felt
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CAPE TOWN - There may have been concerns about the golden trio prior to the season, but for the moment three’s a company at Premiership champions Mamelodi Sundowns.
The much-decorated Pitso Mosimane’s departure for Egyptian giants Al Ahly left a hole as wide as Patrice Motsepe’s bank balance and the Brazilians have attempted to fill it with three coaches, namely Manqoba Mngqithi, Rhulani Mokwena and Steve Komphela.
The collective intelligence imparted on the Chloorkop training ground certainly seems to be paying off, with Masandawana back in their familiar position at the summit of the PSL table after three rounds.
The coaches’ influence was particularly evident in the construction of the opening goal in the 2-0 victory over Cape Town City on Wednesday evening.
After striker Peter Shalulile was brought down on the edge of the box, Rivaldo Coetzee neatly set up Lyle Lakay from the resultant free-kick. The former City striker then delivered an inch-perfect shot that rattled the net of his former team.
"Once again one must commend the work that is being done by the coaches. 'Abednego' and 'Shadrack' have really done a good job, the set-piece that we scored with [Lyle] Lakay they [Rhulani Mokwena and Steve Komphela] worked on it. It's really encouraging that things that we're working on in training are coming out," Mngqithi said.
"It's really encouraging to work with people that have so much intelligence, knowledge and detail. One is really encouraged with the work that the guys are putting in, our support staff, the medical team, one is really happy."
But although City are top of the standings and have yet conceded in the Premiership thus far, Mngqithi still believes there is plenty to come from the Brazilians this season.
"I'm still a little bit unhappy, the game was a little scrappy. We allowed them moments where they could have easily come back where we could have really buried the game earlier on but it's work in progress," he said.
"We're still not taking care of the ball as much as we should, we're losing possession too cheap at times we get too excited after good pressing moments but when we regain possession we don't play forward, with the intent to cause harm to the opponents."
Meanwhile, according to reports Sundowns set to lose playmaker Gaston Sirino to Al Ahly. The Uruguayan impressed when the two teams met during their CAF Champions League meeting in February this year and is poised to rejoin his former mentor Mosimane in Egypt.