Once earmarked for a glittering future at Orlando Pirates, Augustine Mahlonoko, who now turns out for Pretoria Callies in the GladAfrica Championship, is calling for South Africans to get vaccinated so that everything can go back to normal.
On loan at Callies through his parent club Baroka FC, Mahlonoko got vaccinated with the rest of his Callies teammates on Thursday.
The midfielder says playing without supporters at the stadium is no longer the same, and he advises anyone who hasn’t gotten their jab to go get it or those who are skeptical about taking the jab to find more about vaccines.
“I think everyone should get their jab because we want to go back to our normal lives soon. We miss our supporters, we miss the vibe in the stadium with our fans. Now it’s not normal playing (competitive games), it is like we are in a training session week in and week out. We really need to go back to our normal lives and have supporters again at the stadiums. That’s why I think it’s very important to take a vaccine,” said the 20-year old midfielder.
“Because at the end of the day our lives are very important, it’s not only about football, even our impact in the society, so we must take care of our lives, our bodies and careers.”
“You always hear stories from social media, but I would advise people to go to clinics to find out more about vaccines, its side effects, what it can do, what it protects you from and all the information you need before you vaccinate. Then as a person you will decide, at the end of the day all we can do is give advice, but it is your decision as a human being to take care of yourself.”
Callies are the latest team to take their players for a vaccine, with Cape Town City having been among the first Premier Soccer League to take their entire staff for a jab, followed by TS Galaxy and Mamelodi Sundowns.