The former Blackburn Rovers and Portsmouth defender played for South Africa’s senior men’s team at the age of 17.
“When we went to the Bafana Bafana camp, no one wanted to share a room with Lucas Radebe,” Mokoena told Phakaaathi.
“The player he was at the time and someone of that calibre, a lot of players didn’t want to share a room with him. What will you talk to him about? What would the conversation be like, so a lot of players avoided sharing a room with him,” added the man who played over 100 games for Bafana.
“When I came into the camp I insisted that I will go and share a room with him and the other players allowed me to go. I get there and he is playing jazz. I thought what we can talk about. I was 17 at the time.
“Then I asked a question about our upcoming game and he lowered his jazz and we spoke, from there we spoke. Question after question we talked. We went on to play together a day or two later in defence.
“I think sharing a room with him at each camp after that also played a big role in me being his successor as the captain of the national team. I was not aware at the time but come to think of it, that could have played a role.”