Nhlakanipho Ntuli aims to be better than Kamohelo Mokotjo at FC Twente
Posted: 15 October 2014 Time: 15:57
FC Twente and Bafana Bafana prospect Nhlakanipho Ntuli says his ambition is to become a better player than new club mate Kamohelo Mokotjo.
Ntuli is enjoying life in Holland after making a permanent switch from Orlando Pirates to the Dutch side in February this year.
The former Pirates junior had been travelling back and forth to Holland for the past three years, as he was unable to obtain a work permit due to his age, but has finally settled in the Dutch city of Enschede since moving abroad after his 18th birthday.
Ntuli was recently joined at Twente by Mokotjo, who arrived from fellow Dutch side PEC Zwolle, and the Amajita midfielder says he is happy to have his countryman at the club.
“He [Mokotjo] is a good friend of mine since he came to the club. I give him support because he found me here and I talk to him so it's okay, I feel happy to have another South African at Twente,” Ntuli tells FC Twente TV.
“We are different because I'm a guy who likes to talk, I'm a crazy guy but he's a quiet guy, just a relaxed guy so even in the field I learn a lot because of the way he plays, the way he handles the game. This gives me the strength to learn how to do things so that I can arrive where he is and be better than him.
“I've been playing a lot of games, 90 minutes back-to-back, so I think I'm doing very good and it doesn't end there, I still need to work harder because my aim is not to stay at Twente, I want to play in the big leagues.”
Ntuli is currently playing with the reserve side, known as ‘Jong FC Twente’, and has been a regular feature in the team that plays in the Dutch second tier known as the ‘Eerste Divisie’.
The 18-year-old midfielder, who recently got his first call-up to the senior national team, says he is there to work hard and make a name for himself, while also expressing his delight at his role within a new team.
“Football, I take it as my job. I’m a player that plays box-to-box in the number eight role, also here at Jong FC Twente, so I play with aggression, to be a leader, a player who can link the defending and attacking,” Ntuli explains.
‘Nana’ talks of how he made it over into Europe at such a young age, trying to adapt to a different lifestyle and culture, as well as his hopes of one day featuring in the senior team alongside Mokotjo.
“When I came here, it was cold, I felt like I couldn’t play here because it’s far away from my family, and it’s a different lifestyle and culture. I waited and told myself that it’s another life, I have to believe that I want to live a better life, so I have to come here and work harder and make my name,” he adds.
“I’ve learnt the lifestyle, because [coming] from Africa to here, it’s a bit different. Here [I have] learnt the lifestyle, to focus on football and to know why I came here.
“In South Africa, sometimes we play football for fun. But here you always have to give hundred percent, and know that you are here to do a job so you can have a better life in the future,” says the teenager.
Watch the full interview with FC Twente TV below: