Mamelodi Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane says he is disappointed with the way Tiyani Mabunda was handled in the recent Bafana Bafana camp
Posted: 17 November 2016 Time: 19:18
Mamelodi Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane was not too pleased with the condition in which some of his key players returned from international duty following the recent FIFA break.
Mosimane is preparing his side for a crunch Premier Soccer League clash against Kaizer Chiefs on Saturday and is weighing up which players may have been over-exerted in the international break.
However, as a former national team coach himself, ‘Jingles’ accepts that it is the unfortunate reality for many club coaches across the world.
Mosimane was particularly dissatisfied with the fact that midfielder Tiyani Mabunda featured the full 90 minutes in both of Bafana Bafana’s games against Senegal and Mozambique this past week.
“Mabunda [played] 90 minutes twice in Bafana – the story [of overloading] I always talk about,” lamented Mosimane ahead of Saturday’s Absa Premiership meeting with Kaizer Chiefs.
"I’m happy Bafana said the players are overloaded – [I read that] the doctor came and told [coach] Shakes [Mashaba], ‘the players are overloaded, we’re reducing the program’.
“So what was the talk before, about me talking? I was right, so there’s no need to send letters because they’re saying it now, which is beautiful."
The CAF Champions League-winning coach was dumbfounded by the fact that the 28-year-old Mabunda, who was not in the initial plans but was called up as a late replacement to the injured Dean Furman, was left to fight through both games.
"But I’m disappointed to see Mabunda playing two games,” he went on. "I mean, we’ve got 25 players there [in camp], play them, play others, we’ve got enough midfielders.
"And it’s a friendly, and we played Mozambique by the way guys – no man!”
Mosimane reiterated that he had warned of his players vulnerability, and feels he was finally proved right when left-back Tebogo Langerman pulled out of the recent camp with a hamstring injury.
“It’s the same with Langerman – he played two games remember? Against Egypt and Burkina Faso. I complained that he can’t play two games because he had been playing three games in six days,” he added.
“We are traveling, it’s not easy. So what happened to Langerman? So I was right, hey? I don’t have him now, but hopefully he’s [fine].
"I saw him jogging around and the doctor says, 'let’s play him, we think he’ll make it’, so he’ll go for a late fitness test.”
Mosimane blames a lack of correlation between suspended coach Mashaba and acting head coach Owen da Gama for the perceived mishandling of Mabunda, but was pleased with the game-time of Hlompho Kekana and Keagan Dolly.
"Mabunda played two games, so I’m asking myself, do I want to risk him and he pulls a hamstring or a groin, and then I don’t even have him for the [Club] World Cup.
"But I also understand Owen [Da Gama] has to play his team [against Mozambique]; Shakes [Mashaba] wanted to play his team [against Senegal], so it’s the price to pay.
"The program is not correlated and the players are overloaded, but it’s life.”
He conceded: "Kekana at least was managed properly. Keagan was cramping, I think in the first match, so it’s their life. I told them they must also try and do their best and rest."