Avatar photo

By Katlego Modiba

Football Journalist

Williams praises Mokwena for revolutionising his goalkeeping game

'The role of goalkeeping has changed, you need to be a sweeper keeper and be involved in the build-up play,' said the Sundowns goalkeeper.

Football has evolved over the years and so has the role of a modern day goalkeeper. It’s evident in Ronwen Williams’ ability to play out from the back instead of the traditional long ball forward.

“The role of goalkeeping has changed, you need to be a sweeper keeper and be involved in the build-up play. Especially at our team,” said the experienced Williams about his new-found role with league champions Mamelodi Sundowns.

“I think many teams didn’t expect it, you see it when you watch Man City and Barcelona. Coach Rulani (Mokwena) has seen that he has keepers who can play that role and take it to another level. It has been amazing for me because the coach showed me another side of my game and it’s amazing the amount of work that he and the technical team put it to give us these ideas.”

Williams breaking records

Williams’ 18 clean sheets this past season is a new record in the DStv Premiership, surpassing that of Orlando Pirates great Moeneeb Josephs who kept 17 clean sheets in the 2009-2010 campaign. What was also impressive about 31-year-old’s maiden season with Masandanwa was his ability to play with the ball at his feet, and many consider him unlucky not have won footballer of the season.

“We have so many build-up schemes and on the day (of the game) the coach gives me that role as to which one we’re going to do because I can see it better as I’m involved in the game and how we do the first build-up, the second or third one, sometimes even a fourth one,” the goalkeeper of the season revealed.

“I obviously start the attacks and we work so hard on it. We spend countless hours on training field and also in the boardroom where we look at better ways to build-up and help our attackers because we want to get the ball up there as quickly as possible. We don’t want to play route one football because we don’t have the players for that so we try to take control from our build-up play.”