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Simba SC's Mkude would have remained unknown without me - Kihwelo

10:40 GMT+3 23/03/2020
Jonas Mkude of Tanzania and Simba.
The 27-year old midfielder has been on the limelight in recent days after skipping national team training camp and admitted he drinks alcohol

Former Simba SC assistant coach Jamhuri Kihwelo has claimed he played a great role in helping midfielder Jonas Mkude remain and be an important figure at the club.

Mkude, who has been serving Simba since 2012, has been in the limelight in recent weeks after he skipped Taiafa Stars' training camp and also admitted he drinks alcohol but with limitations.

Kihwelo, who served Simba under French coach Patrick Liewg, claimed Mkude was never trusted and he had to stick with him on numerous occasions.

“Without my efforts, I really do not know where [Jonas] Mkude would have been now,” Kihwelo told Mwanaspoti.

“Maybe he could have even remained an unknown person in the world of football because the french coach [Patrick Liewg] never trusted him at all.

“He never wanted him and it is me who pushed to see he was always included in matchday squads. Result? It is Mkude, you know him today.”

After skipping national team training, which was later disbanded due to the coronavirus, Mkude came out to deny allegations he had retired and also talked about his habit of alcoholism.

“Like any other human being, I’m not perfect and definitely, I have my weaknesses as anyone else, therefore, people should stop judging me on the wrong end,” Mkude is quoted by Daily News

“Yes! I take booze but [I am] not willful to indulge to excess…people must also understand at what time I take booze.

“You know, it is better before you write or talk about anybody, first contact that person to balance your story because you don’t know how much the conclusions you draw is going to hurt and tarnish the image of others.”

Meanwhile, Kihwelo also explained why Ibrahim Ajibu and Said Ndemla have not been making it into Simba's starting team recently.

“They are good players but every coach comes with his own playing style and philosophy. This is the reason why you can see some players finding it hard to keep their places in the first team and their careers ending up badly,” the coach told Mwanaspoti.

Simba gave their senior players a seven-day break owing to the suspension of Vodacom Premier League (VPL) action.