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The former Bafana coach doesn’t believe Sundowns are the favourites to win the league following their great start to the season, but he’s happy with the progress

EXCLUSIVE
By Ernest Makhaya

Mamelodi Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane has told Goal that the secret behind their great start to the season is the quality of players that he bought during the off-season.

The Brazilians are the only unbeaten team in the PSL this season, and they’re the hot favourites to win the PSL title, but Mosimane says the team hasn’t reached the level where one would say they are the favourites as he continues to build the team for the next five years.

"I think the difference between this season and last is that we bought well. These are quality players and they are also young players,” Mosimane told Goal. “I don't want to say we have arrived, because we haven’t achieved or won anything, but like I always say I am building the team for the next five years. We are not a finished product,” he said.

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Mosimane believes Sundowns fans wanted results so badly when he came in last season, and that put pressure on the players to perform. He says winning games comes with playing good football.

“Fans were frustrated when I came to Sundowns last December. They wanted results because the team was on a slump, and unfortunately results don’t come when you are looking for them.

“Firstly, the team has to play good football, the type of football that will win you games, and that wasn’t the case with us last season. We just wanted results without playing good football,” he said.

Despite signs of improvement when Mosimane took over, Sundowns failed to make the top eight, and the former Bafana coach believes that could be motivation for the newly bought players to want to do well this season.

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“But everyone saw that we improved towards the end of last season, and one would feel we were unlucky not to qualify for the MTN 8, but it’s okay. It was a wakeup call and maybe that’s one factor that has motivated these newly recruited players,” said Mosimane.

Mosimane also spoke of the impact brought in by Khama Billiat, Dove Wome and Bongani Zungu in his team. The trio has been playing regularly under Mosimane’s stewardship, and the 49-year-old mentor is happy with their contribution to the team.

“I don’t like talking about individuals, but I think Billiat, Wome and Zungu have done well since coming through. They’re still young and they’re still going to improve. I am happy Khama has started scoring goals.

“They have given us a new direction with their pace and ability to take on players, and I am not surprised they are not overlooked to represent their respective countries,” added Mosimane.

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