Monteiro puts aside personal glory
Posted: 5 January 2009 Time: 12:10 pm
Mamelodi Sundowns striker Dario Monteiro says he values his club’s performance and position on the table more than personal glory despite entering the New Year as leading goal scorer at Chloorkop with just four League goals to his name.
“I will continue to do my best for Sundowns because we are in a difficult situation and need to get out as fast as possible. All we need to do is pull together as we go forward,” says the Mozambican.
“It is important to me that the team wins and not whether that I have scored the goals. Goals can always come from anyone in the team, as long as we win.
“What matters is the position of the team on the log and to be in ninth position right now doesn’t make me happy even if the records say I have scored the most league goals for the club so far. How am I supposed to be happy if the goals are not counting for the team’s success?
“It would have been satisfying if I was scoring and the team was sitting on top of the table. So, for now, there is more to do ahead than what I have already done so far,” he says.
The 31-year-old will need to score more often if he is to get game time with Sibusiso Zuma back to widen French coach Henri Michel’s options upfront where there are currently also Collins Mbesuma, Katlego Mphela and Lungisani Ndlela.
Sundowns players are already back at training under Michel who is being assisted by fitness trainer Florent Motta. The Frenchman’s assistant coach, Samir Boujarari, is expected in the country tomorrow (Tuesday).
The Brazilians start the second year with the mission of getting their championship campaign back on track with improved performances from the ones they showed before the Christmas break.
That mission of showing consistency, especially at home, starts with a potentially explosive clash against rivals Kaizer Chiefs where maximum points will lay the foundation for the second round where a lot is expected from Michel’s and his men.
Victory over Chiefs will also be a huge psychological boost to the players as they enter this period where they will be going all out to reclaim the League championship.
Also on Sundowns' agenda this year will be the Caf Confederations Cup which starts next month.
Captain Michael Manzini said the players are fully aware of the situation that the club finds itself in and they are determined to improve on the field of play.
“There is no way that things can get worse than they are at the moment. We got ourselves in this situation and we have to work hard and get ourselves out it,” he told the club’s website.
Manzini added that one of the most important lessons learned last year was to play together as a unit and not as individuals and establish a consistent run of results hat will see them close the gap on the early pacesetters.