Pitso Mosimane: ‘I am not racist, but local is lekker…’

OUTSPOKEN Mamelodi Sundowns mentor Pitso Mosimane has urged South African soccer bosses to have more faith in local coaches.

Mosimane recently led Sundowns to a fifth Premiership title since he took over in December 2012 and a 10th for Sundowns overall‚ making him the most successful coach in SA football.

He did not hold back and said local coaches are not respected in SA. “There is a perception in my country‚ and it is not only about football but everything‚ that a black man cannot do this‚” he said.

“I am not playing the race card here because I don’t need to do that‚ but you know I always say ‘local is lekker’. In my technical team‚ I have English‚ Greek‚ Indian‚ Coloured‚ Xhosa‚ Zulu and everything that you can think of. It’s the rainbow nation and I like to keep it local.

“We need to believe in our own people.

“It doesn’t mean that when somebody comes with a European passport [they are ] better than what we have in the country.

“That’s my message and I need to drive this message to our own people here. I am from the township‚ assistant coach Manqoba Mngqithi is from the township‚ coach Wendell Robinson is not from the suburbs. Physiotherapist Saki Ngwevela is from a township in Cape Town.”

Since he joined the Brazilians during the 2012/2013 season‚ Mosimane has achieved unparalleled trophy success at Chloorkop that includes the Caf Champions League and the Super Cup.

In his seven completed seasons‚ Sundowns have won the league title five times and finished second twice. They have also captured the Telkom Knockout twice and the Nedbank Cup once. Mosimane dedicated his fifth league title to local coaches.

“We have a lot of those people in the country but we like to fill our benches with people from outside.

“I am not saying that we must not have people from outside coming to the country‚ but let’s look at what we have here first.

“All my analysts and medical staff are qualified‚ they went to University of Pretoria and University of Johannesburg‚ which are credible universities. So‚ why are we looking overseas.

“That’s the point I am trying to make‚ that Steve Komphela or Mandla Ncikazi can make it‚ we have the people here but we doubt our people.

“In this country‚ we doubt our own people‚ but local is lekker and this trophy is for local coaches and we have them.

“We don’t have to go and fill our benches with European coaches when we have local people. You guys are local journalists‚ why should someone from England come here to cover my story.

“You can cover my story.

“SA football needs to transform and change because we have the material and we can do it. If Hlompho Kekana and Denis Onyango can win seven league titles‚ it shows that we can do it.”

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