Conciliatory Jingles shows more camaraderie
In the past two seasons, Pitso Mosimane, coach of Absa Premiership champions Sundowns, has had soccer fanatics glued to their television screens for postmatch interviews. But in the 2015/16 soccer calender year, his words have taken on a new-found maturity, sounding as positive as his nickname, Jingles.
The Pretoria-based side convincingly beat Algeria’s ES Setif 2-0 in their own back yard last weekend in the CAF Champions League encounter.
Mosimane said he was happy with the results: “We only trained for five days. I must give credit to Kabelo Rangoaga [fitness trainer] and the players, who really look after themselves. The players were up to the task.”
Back in the 2013/14 season, when his team beat Platinum Stars 3-1 in the Nedbank Cup, he took all the credit and said: “This one I have earned. I give it to myself.”
When the Brazilians lost 2-0 in the away leg to Ghanaian opposition Medeama SC, Mosimane was furious at the referee for poor officiating: “It is terrible – two artificial setpieces, the penalty and other free-kick … they had a chance to score in open play, but they couldn’t. These Algerian referees are unbelievable.”
Fast-forward to February, when his team lost to Zimbabwean outfit Chicken Inn. Mosimane praised the opposition, saying: “They looked a lot sharper than us.”
Who can forget the comments he made about Kaizer Chiefs’ Willard Katsande, when Sundowns triumphed in his (Mosimane’s) quest to become the first black coach to win the league in 2014?
“If you keep Shabba quiet, you are okay. Katsande can have the ball; he is not much of a harm.”
When he won his first league title, Mosimane said: “People say it is easy to win with Sundowns [because of their financial strength], but why couldn’t they win the league for the past seven years with the players they bought and the money put into the team?”
He said this year: “I am happy with myself because I never complained about any referee this season.”
– Solven Sibiya