News from South Africa Mamelodi Sundowns: Everyone in the team is positive and willing to work for the team – Thapelo Morena

Mamelodi Sundowns won the Nedbank Cup to complete a domestic treble as they edged out Marumo Gallants 2-1 in an incredible final in Rustenburg.

Masandawana’s hard fought victory against the defending Champions of the Ke Yona competition came at the dying moments of extra time. Thapelo Morena came off the bench to clinch the victory for Bafana Ba Style in a dramatic fashion with a composed finish in the box towards the bottom corner from Themba Zwane’s square pass. Morena described his role in the triumph over Gallants:

“From outside I came in as a winger trying to get behind the defense and [when Khuliso] Mudau went out I had to go back to the right back, but it didn’t stop me from going forward. It was definitely about seeing the space and it was inviting me. As a footballer you can’t say you have one specific position, for me every chance that I get in the field I just do my level best and gratefully I definitely helped the team in making sure that I use the opportunities that I’ve been getting.”

“You always have to be positive and always be ready when you get the chance to play. Everyone in the team is positive and willing to work for the team, whoever gets the chance and does well will stay in the team and as a player individually I will always keep on pushing irregardless of whether I start the game or come from the bench. I will definitely make sure that I give the best to the team”

The Brazilians prevailed in their Nedbank Cup journey with a sterling 4-0 win in round of 32 against Richards Bay FC. The Tshwane giants kept another clean sheet in the round of 16 when they thrashed Mathaithai FC 6-0 and Summerfield Dynamos 5-0 in the quarter finals. Bafana Ba Style conceded their first goal of the campaign in the semi-finals when they clashed with Royal AM in KwaZulu-Natal, Denis Onyango cheered his teammates for their diligence in this year’s campaign:

“For me I think [the team] has been very hardworking, of course we’ve had few challenges here and there but our main target was to win everything on the table. We came short of one trophy but everyone gave their best, the most important one was the league and we got it, it gave us the momentum coming into the final of the Nedbank Cup and we got it as well which is fantastic. I think the guys did a fantastic job winning all the trophies that are available in the PSL this season.”

“Everyone has played their part in this season’s campaign, from [Ricardo] Goss to Reyaad [Pieterse] and Kennedy [Mweene] coming up with big saves. We are one happy family in terms of the goalkeeping department and of course the infield players as well. We need to keep pushing each other and whoever gets the opportunity [to play] it shows, even when I am not in goals the team can win, even when Kennedy is out and Reyaad plays the team can win so we always support each other and try to give our best to the team. It’s important as a team to stand together and keep the team strong and happy.”

The Ugandan shot stopper also showed interest to win another domestic treble with Masandawana in the next season and to continue with their continental trophy hunt:

“I could probably get my 10th league trophy next season, another Nedbank Cup and another MTN8 Cup. We keep grinding and getting the results, we have to be competitive every season and that’s why the guys have managed to win three trophies this season. It’s been a great season, we could’ve done better with the Champions League, one or two steps ahead but I’m happy with the guys they really gave their best and with the push from the management and the technical staff it’s been fantastic because without them we couldn’t have made it this far.”

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