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Mngqithi Explains Why Jali Captained Downs

Mamelodi Sundowns co-head coach Manqoba Mngqithi has explained why the coaching trio opted to hand Andile Jali the armband.

Jali took the armband with the likes of Mosa Lebusa, Kennedy Mweene and Dennis Onyango all being absent from their MTN8 Cup semi-final second leg.

The midfielder repaid his coaches’ faith after being named Man of the Match in the 3-0 win that saw Masandawana book their ticket in this year’s final.

Mngqithi explained after the match they picked Jali because of his fighting spirit and leadership skills.

“It was not a very easy decision, we had too many candidates for the captain’s armband,” he told reporters,” Mngqithi told reporters.

“But we felt we needed a soldier with mentality today, somebody who can push the team. Because it was important to us to go into this match with an attitude to want to compete and win.

“There was no better person in that space to make sure he galvanises the team, he gives the team the energy to push on and he did that very well and we were very excited to see him perform the way he performed as our captain.

“But in our team, we have got too many people that have been captained. We considered Peter, we considered Mshishi, we considered Kekana, we considered Rushing De Reuck, we considered Kutumela.

“But we felt AJ might be the right person in the right position to make sure in that area he takes leadership because it is an area that we had lost Riva (Rivaldo Coetzee), who is always in that space, and we had Hash (Haashim Domingo), who is a youngster next to him, to make sure the team has balance in that space

“And I must be honest, I think he played very well.”

Downs will now face the winner between Swallows FC and Cape Town City in the MTN8 final.

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