Downs Finally Find Dolly Replacement

Mamelodi Sundowns co-coach Rulani Mokwena has given insight into how their recruitment of new players was done ahead of the new season.

 

Mamelodi Sundowns co-coach Rulani Mokwena has given insight into how their recruitment of new players was done ahead of the new season.

Sundowns recently announced the signings of Grant Kekana, Neo Maema, Divine Lunga and Pavol Safranko, boosting an already strong squad to try win a fifth straight Premiership title, while they also aim to get ther hands on next season's CAF Champions League title.

Mokwena explained the reason for bringing in new players and, in particular, spoke about why Maema was signed from Bloemfontein Celtic. Mokwena pointed out that Sundowns have not had a left winger similar to Keagan Dolly, who left the club in 2017 to join French Ligue 1 outfit Montpellier.

"The good thing is that the recruitment was done in a very thorough manner, where we did a lot of analysis, not just with video footage but also with data, in trying to measure what we have from a numbers perspective and what we do not have and what we need in relation to our concepts and playing style and how we want to see the team play.

The recruitment was largely based on the needs and profiling the right players to be able to help us," Mokwena told the Sundowns media department.

"Each one of the signings was particular in solving certain aspects of our team. I will give you a case in point of Neo Maema. Maema fills an important role in terms of what we need because auditing the squad, of all the wingers we have in the team, Neo Maema allows us to have a left footed winger.

People will say that does not sound like a detail worthy enough to go into the market, but the reality is that when you look at the squad we had, a lot of our left footed players were players that could develop the game for us.

When I say develop the game… I mean we have left-footed centre-halves in Ricardo Nascimento, Mosa Lebusa.

There’s Lyle Lakay, Aubrey Modiba. That’s just to develop the game. When you move into your consolidation phase, you can’t have left-footed influence because our midfielders are right footed.

Our central midfielders are right footed. Our left wingers are right footed. In the team, we did not have a single left footed winger.

The last time Sundowns had a left footed winger was Keagan Dolly and we never really replaced Keagan in that space. And then we went on to lose Percy (Tau).

The scarce resource of a left footed winger, with the ability to play the Sundowns way, is something that you don’t find in the market at the moment, particularly in the local market.

"So the availability of Neo helped us to recruit a left footed winger, with age still on his side and enormous potential to develop. The good thing is that the boy has a degree in chemistry. He is a smart kid and we have done our own background check on him."

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Ukrabet - South African Football News: Downs Finally Find Dolly Replacement
Downs Finally Find Dolly Replacement
Mamelodi Sundowns co-coach Rulani Mokwena has given insight into how their recruitment of new players was done ahead of the new season.
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