At home with Pitso
Pitso reveals his other character
LAST Thursday, before a storm hit Johannesburg, Pitso Mosimane had a couple of men replacing the broken glass wall in the lounge overlooking the garden at his Houghton home. There were a few soccer balls, a rugby ball, a basketball and a cricket bat hidden behind some of the flowers in his garden, so it’s no surprise there was broken glass. It’s clear that when he’s not guiding Sundowns players to domestic and continental success, Mosimane is producing future stars in his back yard – his children. His eldest son Kopano, who is quite the athlete, is the one responsible for the broken wall. He plays soccer, rugby, cricket and he’s a swimmer. And then there’s five-year-old Reatlegile. According to his father, he can kick a soccer ball very well for a boy his age and the coach recently discovered the little man can swim the length of their swimming pool at home. His daughter Lelentle, the eldest, enjoys playing netball but is more of an academic. “The person who brought the rugby ball and the cricket bat is not here. That’s Kopano. He’s at Hilton College. Look at the window. You don’t have to ask what happened,” said Mosimane, pointing at the shattered structure.
“The younger one can shoot [the ball]. My boy does not know how to dribble, but when it comes to the technique of kicking, he hammers the ball. Sometimes I put cones and he knocks them over.
“I make sure every Saturday, when we are not playing, I go watch his games. He plays for Corinthians and they have a little league.”
Lelentle and Kopano are away from home at boarding school, so Mosimane spends time with Reatlegile when he gets home at 4.30pm.
They do quite a lot together, including having Greek lessons. Mosimane played in Greece, so he is fluent in the language.
“My other job is to teach him Greek. He is at Saheti School, a Greek school. So I am helping him.
“He’s learnt how to play monopoly. Sometimes I watch cartoons with him, but after five minutes I’m bored. Sometimes we play football games on the iPad, but I’m not good at that,” said Mosimane, who has a TV in almost every room to avoid the power struggle most families endure for the remote.
While playing in Greece for Ionikos, Mosimane developed a love for basketball. He wakes up at 3am to watch NBA games.
“I love it big time. I record the games, but I prefer to watch them live on TV at 3am. Greece are in the top three in basketball in Europe. On Fifa weeks during my playing days there, we played basketball in some of our training sessions.”
Mosimane loves reading. In his study, there are books on some of the world’s top coaches of today and yesteryear, like Jose Mourinho, Arsene Wenger, Sir Alex Ferguson and Sir Bobby Robson.
There are non-football books too, like the one on Donald Trump, the newly elected American president.
“I’ve got Trump here. He’s a personality. You cannot win the elections on luck. So this guy is special. I know we want to judge the character, but I don’t want to talk about his character.”
With so much time spent at training or on the road, when does Mosimane get to be with his wife Moira?
“I try my best. From 5pm to 8.30pm, I give her time. The challenge comes when there’s [Uefa] Champions League and PSL matches. So I record the matches and catch up the next day. She runs marathons, so she wakes up about 4am [to train]. At 9pm she sleeps, so she can wake up early.
“We had a plan that on Thursday nights we would go out. But it fell off because I record the games and I watch them.”
With the help of his wife’s PA, Mosimane is able to remember birthdays and their anniversary. He admits he is hopeless in the kitchen. “I am good at making sandwiches. I only know how to cook spaghetti Bolognese.”
“ My boy does not know how to dribble, but... he hammers the ball...