Tributes pour in for late Golden Arrows captain Nkanyiso Mngwengwe
DURBAN - Lamontville Golden Arrows captain, Nkanyiso Mngwengwe has passed away.
The 30-year-old lost his life in the early hours of Monday morning en route to hospital, his brother, Mphathi Mngwengwe, said.
"He was on his own place together with his wife. He was shaking and the wife came and woke us up. We rushed to the house and when we got there, he was shaking. We put him on his car in an attempt to rush to hospital so that he can get help.
"When we go to Pietermaritzburg (from Cato Ridge), he was no more. He passed away on our way to hospital."
Arrows boss Mato Madlala is devastated by the passing away of Mngwengwe.
"I'm saddened by the passing away of Nkanyiso. I remember when he first arrived at Arrows as a promising footballer, full of energy. He was ready to fight for the team. I would like to extend my sincere condolences to the family of Mngwengwe. My thoughts and prayer are with you in this difficult moment, " Madlala stated.
Mngwengwe joined Abafana Bes'thende in 2013-14 under the tutelage of Manqoba Mngqithi. He made his debut at the age of 22.
Mngqithi told IOL Sport he signed Mngwengwe becaise of defensive prowess.
"The reason why I signed that boy is because he had a rare talent one-on-one defensively. That talent was exceptional. He was very strong, but there were still areas to work on," Mngqithi said
"Looking at the number of defenders that we had at that time, I believe he had the capacity to play in the PSL. He was a rare talent. I believed in him so much and he never let me down."
He made 140 appearances during his career with Abafana Bes'thende after bursting on the scene in 2013.
"I was very disappointed when I heard that he has passed on because I know he had a lot of injuries which made it difficult for him to realise his true potential. He came to us on trials and I admired him the first time I saw him. He was a very nice boy.
"He was humble and down to earth. He never gave me problems by coming late at training," Mngqithi added.
Mngwengwe has been struggling with injuries for the past two seasons. Clinton Larsen, who appointed him as the captain of the side was also left shocked by the passing of Mngwengwe.
"It is very sad. When you arrive at the club, it takes time to develop relationships. We've got on from the beginning," Larsen said.
"When I saw his professionalism and his character. Those are type of players that I usually strikes a good bond with. Players who are serious about their careers. Players who believe in what I'm doing. He was one of those. He gave me all the commitment and the support, I could ask for as a coach.
"I did the same for him as a coach. He really performed well, not for me but for the club," Larsen elaborated.
The details of the funeral are yet to be finalised at this stage, but the club is in touch with his family.
"It is sad news because I spoke to him on Friday. He one of the players I've always kept in touch with," Larsen said.
"Coaches have those relationships with certain players especially during this lockdown. Friday, I spoke to him and he was on high spirits. He told me he was training well and is back from injury. You hear news like this, I comes as shock.
"He was looking forward to work his back in to the team after being injured. When Mathiane was injured, myself and Mandla Ncikazi we decided to give him the captaincy and he never looked back. He never let us down. He led by example." Larsen added.