Mamelodi Sundowns head coach Rulani Mokwena says there’s plenty of silverware to play for and they will move on from the MTN8 disappointment swiftly.
Sundowns lost 3-1 on penalties after the final at Moses Mabhida Stadium ended goalless, with Sipho Chaine saving spot-kicks from Teboho Mokoena, Junior Mendieta and Bongani Zungu.
Mokwena said the conditions didn’t allow for that memorable spectacle expected from two clubs but couldn’t fault the effort of his squad.
“The conditions were quite difficult and even the pitch wasn’t the best, quite long, heavy, slow – even though they tried to water it,” Mokwena said.
“But okay it sounds like sour grapes when you speak about conditions when you don’t win, let’s stay with what it is – let’s leave things on the periphery, let’s talk football and on the football we did our best, we tried very had, we are in a difficult moment.
“But to generate the amount of chances, still without Thapelo Morena, Lucas [Ribeiro], you know how important they are for us. But the boys did their best and were so proud of the players representing the club with everything they have every match, they gave their all.”
When probed about Costa failing the late fitness test, he stated it wasn’t only the Brazilian forward who was touch and go before stating they will do all they can to bring happiness to the Yellow Nation.
“The medical team tried very hard to get him back, but it wasn’t to be, they worked very hard on Peter [too], and he picked up a knock, but unbelievable, selflessness, very proud of their efforts, so I’ll focus on the positives,” he added.
“This team tries their best to win, we are Sundowns, and we will bounce back. It’s a difficult one to stomach but we’ll bounce back, we’ll be back.”
He continued when asked about disappointment with the penalties: “We let our supporters down, we let our club down, we feel it, we apologise for that but we march on and the universe has no budget for pity parties, there’s no time to feel sorry for ourselves.”
“We have to pick ourselves up, be strong and go forward. we have a lot of trophies to play for, a lot of games to win and we’ll bounce back.”
Sundowns return to action with Moroka Swallows in the DStv Premiership after the two-week FIFA International break.