I came to win: Jali

Inner City Gazette - - News - By Staff Re­porter [email protected]­ner-city-gazette.co.za

Andile Jali is re­lieved to have fi­nally put pen-to-pa­per to sign a five-year con­tract with Mamelodi Sun­downs and end the spec­u­la­tions that sur­rounded his next des­ti­na­tion.

The Brazil­ians beat strong com­pe­ti­tion to land the sig­na­ture of the sought-af­ter Bafana Bafana mid­fielder.

Jali joins an al­ready strong mid­field that bull­dozed their way past their op­po­nents to land a record eighth league ti­tle in the Premier Soc­cer League era.

Sun­downs were swift to strengthen that de­part­ment with the aim of re­tain­ing the league next sea­son and once again be crowned African cham­pi­ons by go­ing all the way in the Caf Cham­pi­ons League this year.

“I feel good to have signed for Mamelodi Sun­downs,” Jali said. “At last this deal is done. It’s been drag­ging for a long time. Now I can re­lax be­fore the sea­son starts. I have re­cov­ered from the in­jury, I am good to go.

I passed the med­i­cals. Now I am ready for Sun­downs to tell me when to come to train­ing.”

Jali brings a wealth of ex­pe­ri­enced hav­ing trav­elled the length and breadth of the con­ti­nent with Bafana Bafana and even reach­ing the fi­nal of the 2013 Caf Cham­pi­ons League at his pre­vi­ous club.

The 28-year-old spent four years in Bel­gium with KV Oos­tende be­fore re­turn­ing to the coun­try to link up with coach Pitso Mosi­mane whom he worked with at Bafana Bafana. “I didn’t come back to South Africa to re­lax and just say that I am done be­cause I am coming from Eu­rope,” Jali said. “I came to South Africa to win things, not to just re­lax and say that I am done.

That’s why I came to Sun­downs. I am here to show that I have that thing, to push other play­ers to say that guys you can do it.

I have learned a lot of things from my time in Bel­gium, es­pe­cially how you bounce back from los­ing a game. You mustn’t lose hope un­til it’s done and you achieve your ob­jec­tive.”

That at­ti­tude will come in handy in the Cham­pi­ons League. The 2016 African cham­pi­ons will once again be the first South African club to re­turn to com­pet­i­tive foot­ball with a trip to Togo to take on AS Togo-Port on July 17.

Andile Jali with Sun­downs coach, Pitso Mosi­mane

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