Mngqithi – The Team Wants MTN8 Success
Mamelodi Sundowns co-head coach Manqoba Mngqithi says it was important to book a place in the MTN8 final as this new generation of players looks to make their own legacy and win a tournament that has alluded them for fourteen years.
Sundowns booked their placed after beating Golden Arrows 3-0 on Tuesday, for an overall 4-1 aggregate in the two-legged semi-final.
While stressing that they must not get ahead of themselves, Mngqithi says the team really want to win the MTN8 trophy, a cup that has eluded Sundowns for 14 years, having last won it when it was known as the SAA Super Eight.
“Ja, it’s our target, probably a message was very clear from the beginning, from all of us as the coaches, that this crop of players must also make their own legacy,” Mngqithi said after the final.
“They’ve got a responsibility. To others the MTN8 might not be that prestigious trophy but to us and the new generation, it’s very important to say we won the MTN8 Cup that was elusive for over so many years, I think 14 years if I’m mistaken, something like that.
“So it was very important for our players to come into this match with a mentality to know that we must book a place in the final.
“And when we are in the final, at that time we’ll be talking about making sure that the legacy that they must create for themselves, the team has won every other trophy, but we have not won the MNT8, from 2007.
“So it is very important for us as coaches, and everybody else within the team is hungry for this one, and we want to tread carefully and keep our feet on the ground, and focus as much as we can, and not lose focus at any given stage.”
Mngqithi also explained the changes made to the team, saying he most probably would not have made as many if they had not suddenly had a few players out unavailable.
“To others even today they would say we’d lost focus, because the team changed too much from the previous match, and that was not our plan,” he added.
“We lost a lot of players from the previous match, we lost Musa Lebusa we lost Denis Onyango, and we had to try and find solutions and come up with better strategies to improve, and make sure that we’ve got better performance.
“We also lost Rivaldo Coetzee and that is why we had to come with a team that we came with, but otherwise we would have been very conservative, to make sure that we don’t lose track of what we want to achieve, but credit must be given to our boys, I think they gave a good account of themselves.”
Sundowns will face either Swallows or Cape Town City, who meet on Wednesday evening, in the final at the end of October.