Sundowns midfielder Andile Jali: How can you say that I am arrogant when you don’t know me?

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The former Pirates fan-favourite has been labelled arrogant and self-centered by the media and a section of fans

New Mamelodi Sundowns central midfielder Andile Jali has opened up about his personality and hit back at his critics. 

The 28-year-old player, who recently snubbed Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates for the Brazilians, doesn’t like doing interviews as he has been misquoted by the media. 

“You know sometimes, people tend to turn around what you said and they interpret it the wrong way to sell their papers. It’s not right,” Jali told IOL. 

“I have seen a lot of people doing that in the media. They create stories about players and then supporters attack the players, but the supporters don’t know the real story, they don’t know what happens behind closed doors," he continued.

“How can you say that I am arrogant when you don’t know me? So, I don’t care about what people from the outside think about me. I only care about what my family thinks about me and the people who are helping me to grow,” Jali said.

The main reason why the South Africa international decided to end his four-and-half year stay with Belgian club KV Oostende and come back home was because he wanted to stay with his family. 

Jali is married to celebrity fitness trianer Nonhle Jali and the couple have kids together.

“The hardest part about my time in Belgium was staying alone - busy calling my family on the phone every time. It’s great being back home because I go to my kids after training. I see my kids and I play with them. It’s great to be able to be a physically present dad and do things with them,” he added.

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“There are too many things that have changed about me as a player because when I went to Belgium, I was still young at the time. I am now better at assessing the situation. The coach can give instructions, but there are some moments where you have to make a decision in a split second. I am a smarter player now," Jali explained.

Jali is most likely to make his official debut for Sundowns when they face Togo's AS Togo-Port in back-to-back 2018 Caf Champions League Group C matches next month.

“I came to a team with ambition; a team that wants to win everything they participate in because I also want to win everything,” Jali concluded.

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