Sundowns' Andile Jali is on the right path, says Pitso Mosimane
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DURBAN - Pitso Mosimane has elevated Mamelodi Sundowns to the highest level on the continent and domestically, but so relentless are the demands of the beautiful game that some believe winning a domestic treble will qualify him as the “boss”.
Despite all the success the Brazilians have attained under Mosimane, fans are still thirsting for three trophies in one season at Chloorkop.
If the Premier Soccer League (PSL) does resume after the Covid-19 lockdown, Mosimane and his troops willget an opportunity to pursue this goal having secured the Telkom Knockout already.
Mosimane, though, refuses to entertain the question and says it is not even a priority to win all competitions in one season.
“Look, I don’t know. I don’t personalise on trebles and doubles. For me, the pleasure is to win the next match,” Mosimane articulated in an interview with IOL Sport.
“Obviously, I can’t say I was not aware that I can win a treble. I also included the CAF Champions League which we were eliminated from. But you can’t have everything. Tell me one football coach who wins everything in the world. Name that coach.
"We must win everything, but it is not easy. I mean, if I win everything then, I’ll be at La Liga (in Spain). Even at La Liga nobody wins everything. Even Lionel Messi (of Barcelona) doesn’t have 100 percent scoring rate.”
Before the lockdown, Sundowns were four points behind log leaders Kaizer Chiefs with one game in hand. The Brazilians were also pitted against Bidvest Wits in the semi-finals of the Nedbank Cup.
“Yes, there’s that opportunity. We are already in the semi-finals of the Nedbank Cup and then you say, 'can we win the league?' Yes, we can, why not? We’ve won the Telkom Knockout. If we can win the Telkom, why don’t we believe that we can win the Nedbank. It is the same way, you have to find your way through. If you believe, you can do it.
“What is more pleasing for me at this point time is that I got other players back to shape and are now back playing in the mainstream. You know a player like Andile Jali, he is back to his best now. It took him a while to get into the right path. There’s a lot of issues that he needed to be supported on,” Mosimane added.
Andile Jali has become a key player for Sundowns: Picture: Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix
Jali, who is a key Bafana Bafana player, has now become a vital cog for Sundowns and that’s something that brings smile Mosimane's face.
“Probably, I took time to realize how we could help him. He also took time to help himself. So, to get those guys back, to get (Motjeka) Madisha back and Andile into the national team, that makes me happy. There are a lot of things that are more important to me than winning a treble,” Mosimane stated.
Jali struggled to hit his usual high notes last term after joining Sundowns from Belgian outfit Oostende. His performances in the current season have earned him his place back in the Bafana team.
“Yes, we want to win the treble. I believe 2016 was a big year for Sundowns. We won the Telkom Knockout, we won the league and we went on to win the CAF Champions League. That’s the big treble.
“Then there was this opportunity for this treble again. Orlando Pirates did a double-treble, but you don’t want to compare. At the end of the day, a treble is a treble; ours included a continental title.
"We’ve got to work for it. It is not easy, but if you are going to focus on it, you may end up losing everything. Our focus before lockdown was Pirates,” Mosimane elaborated, referring to a game they were scheduled to play next.