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Rhulani Mokwena Scoops Award - Sundowns Coach Bemoans Key Injury

Last updated: 10 May 2024
John Eastwood 10 May 2024
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  • The Mamelodi Sundowns coach won big at the 2023 COSAFA Awards
  • The Masandawana mentor blamed the fixture list for a key injury
  • Mokwena Claims he has no regrets over Ah Ahly snub
Sundowns coach Rhulani Mokwena is chasing a treble for the 2023-24 season (Getty Images).

Mokwena Wins COSAFA Award

Mamelodi Sundowns coach Rhulani Mokwena was a winner at the inaugural 2023 COSAFA Awards. The ceremony was held at the Sandton Convention Centre on Thursday.
  • Mokwena Wins COSAFA Award
  • Ribeiro Injury Slammed by Mokwena
  • Mokwena: No Al Ahly Regrets

Mokwena was named COSAFA Men’s Coach of the Year following Sundowns’ outstanding form in 2023 as they won record-breaking sixth consecutive league title and the inaugural African Football League.

One of Mokwena’s players, goalkeeper Ronwen Williams was named COSAFA Men’s Goalkeeper of the Year. Young Downs’ winger Thapelo Maseko won the COSAFA Men’s Most Promising Player of the Year award.

Ribeiro Injury Slammed by Mokwena

Despite his award, Rhulani Mokwena bemoaned an injury to key Brazilian forward Lucas Ribeiro Costa. The left-footed attacker went off injured during Wednesday’s 0-0 draw against Golden Arrows with a hamstring complaint. 

The coach said in his post-match interview: “Lucas Ribeiro’s injury is just the consequence of the number of games that we have to play.

“But I don’t think it is that serious.”

The silky left-footer has 14 goals in all competitions and has been amongst the best players in South African football this season. Mokwena will be praying that Ribeiro returns for the Nedbank Cup final on 1 June.

Mokwena: No Al Ahly Regrets

Mamelodi Sundowns head coach Rhulani Mokwena says he has no regrets about declining an offer to join Pitso Mosimane in moving to join Al Ahly in 2020.

Reports this week said that Mokwena was set to move as Mosimane’s assistant coach before changing his mind. He was appointed as Sundowns co-coach alongside Manqoba Mngqithi instead, winning a treble in their first season. 

Since taking over as solo head coach, he has won two more league titles and the African Football League whilst reaching next month’s Nedbank Cup final. 

Mokwena told the media: “To be honest I’ve not had a chance to think about it. Everything happens for a reason. 

“There’s a huge sense of appreciation, gratitude, for where I am today.

“I’m grateful to be the head coach of Mamelodi Sundowns. I will never forget the players in my entire life. They know they have a brother for life.”

Mamelodi Sundowns face Royal AM on Saturday 11 May. The match kicks off at 17:30 SAST at Lucas Moripe Stadium.

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