Michaelson Ntokozo Gumede

By Ntokozo Gumede


‘Bring Pitso and Mokwena to Bafana’, Mammila urges Safa

"Ask Patrice Motsepe and Danny Jordaan: Don't you like how Sundowns play?" says Mammila.

Like most South Africans, Morgan Mammila was pained to see Bafana Bafana missing out on a third straight Fifa World Cup and he seems to have an idea on how South Africa can restore its glory days in world football.

ALSO READ: Big boost for Pirates as Mosele returns ahead of crucial Arrows tie

The Chippa United mentor, who had to watch his side go 2-1 down to Mamelodi Sundowns in the DStv Premiership on Tuesday night, has thrown the spanner in the works and suggested that the South African Football Association should re-employ Pitso Mosimane and have Rulani Mokwena assist him at the national team.

Mosimane enjoyed unparalleled success at Downs and created great memories at Al-Ahly. “Jingles” now calls the shots at the Saudi Arabia side Al-Ahli Saudi FC. But Mammila wants him to occupy Mzansi football’s hottest seat.

“In the Fifa World, there was only one 71-year-old coach, Louis Van Gaal. Did he reach the top four? No. Who reached the final? A 54-year-old and 44-year-old and they are coaching their own countries,” said Mammila.

“Ask Patrice Motsepe and Danny Jordaan (and tell them that Morgan is asking) Don’t you like how Sundowns play?” he added.

— ‘Adopt Sundowns style’ —

Prior to the tie against Masandawana, Mammila was full of praise of Sundowns’ brand of football and he did not change his tone even in defeat. He insists that Bafana should do a copy and paste from Downs’ notebook.

“If we take the kind of system that Sundowns play and we take it to Bafana Bafana, will we not be bringing back the Bafana that we all love? When Sundowns play, all of you (members of the media) are attending but when other teams play, few are there. Why? It is because you are not seeing what you want to see but at Sundowns you see the kind of football that you want to see,” said the Chippa mentor.

ALSO READ: Chiefs reject former Bafana star midfielder Mokotjo

“The Safa president must go and ask Motsepe how he got Sundowns to be what it is now. We know the person who started the system at Sundowns… it’s coach Mosimane. Rulani was there as an assistant. Why can’t we take these two guys and help the national team. Ask him if he can help South Africa with money so that these coaches can work part time for Bafana. I don’t think he will say no because he loves this country.

“Motsepe is a man who likes this country. When there were floods in Durban, he pumped money to help. Don’t you think that man will be proud if South Africa can be in the Fifa World Cup and reach the top four?”

— ‘Money does not play football’ —  

While coaches like Brendon Truter have linked Sundowns’ success to their riches, Mammila, who spent the majority of his career as a football administrator, thinks otherwise.

Given that Downs are owned by billionaire businessman and Caf president, Motsepe, together with his family, it is easy to suggest that Downs buy their success.

“Money does not play football. You can promise your players a R50 000 match bonus if they win every match. Are they going to win? Teams have been relegated even though they have promised players big money to save the status. Money doesn’t buy success,” said Mammila.

ALSO READ: Pogba returns to Juventus training after knee operation

“When was the last time a foreign coach won the league in this country? Who is topping the league, is it a foreigner or South African? It is the local guys.

“We all know Sundowns, they have been playing this type of football for some time and they are mastering it, jealous down. When I said we know how Sundowns play and that their players are just like our players, people thought I was joking. There are at least five Sundowns players in the team that we played against that tested relegation.

“But because of the Sundowns system and good coaching, they have turned those players into well-oiled machines. Khuliso Mudau is a national team player now but where does he comes from? How many red cards did he get… so many. Mothobi Mvala and Peter Shalulile were at Highlands Park and they relegated the team but they are stars now because they are well-coached,” Mammila added.

— Fear fokol — 

If ever there is a coach who holds his head up high and oozes in confidence, it is has to be Mammila. He embodies the personality of a fearless man and one who is never shy to speak his mind. The Chilli Boys coach is not impressed with some of his counterparts, who seem to roll down the red carpet for Sundowns. Mammila does not roll that way.

“I need to respect my players. How do I take players to Sundowns and show that I feel like I have already lost the game? How can I be a coach that goes to a team that you play with at the same level and already think you have lost?

ALSO READ: Mokwena to wield axe on deadwood at Sundowns?

“I am not those coaches who go to Sundowns and say they fear, others say they are watching PlayStation when Sundowns plays. You need to respect your players. If I tell my players that I was watching PlayStation, it means they are useless. We need to respect our players because these are human beings, they are working hard.

“It is still early. There are times where you will win and have those moments of luck. If we were honest, I should have had at least three goals against Sundowns and with three goals I don’t think I would lose a match,” said Mammila.

Access premium news and stories

Access to the top content, vouchers and other member only benefits