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Too many cooks can perfect a recipe in Mamelodi Sundowns kitchen

Rhulani Mokwena, of Mamelodi Sundowns, Manqoba Mnqgithi, coach of Mamelodi Sundowns and Steve Komphela, assistant coach of Mamelodi Sundowns. Photo: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

Rhulani Mokwena, of Mamelodi Sundowns, Manqoba Mnqgithi, coach of Mamelodi Sundowns and Steve Komphela, assistant coach of Mamelodi Sundowns. Photo: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

Published Jan 8, 2022


Johannesburg - So much for too many cooks spoiling the broth! Mamelodi Sundowns have shown that shared technical leadership can be successful by continuing to dominate the local game.

When they defended their league title the season after Pitso Mosimane left for Al Ahly, there were some who felt the coaching trio of Rulani Mokwena, Manqoba Mngqithi and Steve Komphela had benefited from the foundation Jingles had laid.

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The reality though was that Sundowns had freshened the squad up with numerous new players. And the three musketeers did a fantastic job of integrating them without disrupting the team’s winning ways.

And so it was that 2021 became yet another glorious year for the Brazilians who deposited two trophies into their cabinet at their Chloorkop base.

ALSO READ: It was a year to remember as South African soccer was triumphant in many ways on the continent

The 2020/21 league championship was won at a canter, Sundowns leading surprise runners-up Amazulu by a massive 13 points at the end of the 30 matches. The Brazilians had been near invincible during the campaign as they lost just once en route to annexing a record 11th league title in the 25th season of the Premiership era.

When the 2021/22 season began, the Sundowns juggernaut continued where they had left off and achieved a feat that had hitherto proven elusive to the club.

The Brazilians won the MTN8 for the first time since its inception and thus ensured that the club has won all the trophies on offer in domestic football, a remarkable achievement that served to confirm their status as the Premiership era’s best club by far.

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In the league, they showed they were intent on ruling supreme by racing into the lead despite being involved in continental football.

As it is, it will take a monumental capitulation on their part for them not to win the championship for the fifth season running.

Going into the long recess that will see local football return in February, Sundowns enjoy a runaway lead of 14 points atop the table after 18 matches.

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Their march up the table was pretty spectacular as they kept a clean sheet in the first 10 matches of the season and went undefeated in the initial 16 games.

ALSO READ: Mamelodi Sundowns come from behind to earn a point against Marumo Gallants

And they did all of that while booking their place in the CAF Champions League group stage for the umpteenth time.

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That Sundowns are the mean machine they are, has a lot to do with the buying power of their owner Patrice Motsepe.

But there can be no denying that the technical team has over the years developed a playing philosophy that they never deviate from, and players who are brought in are those that will seamlessly fit in.

And such is the level of competition for places in the starting line-up that whatever team the trio of coaches puts out on the field, the phrase second string does not apply to Sundowns.

Of course they are not invincible, the stutter – a loss and a draw – in their last two league matches of 2021 will give the chasing pack a glimmer of hope that they can catch up with them.

But if I were a betting man I would put all my chips on Sundowns being crowned 2021/22 Dstv Premiership champions. They are that class above the rest and having too many cooks ain’t spoiling the broth they are dishing out for Masandawana.


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