Sokhela: AmaZulu getting back to its roots


Usuthu, who recently raised R128 000 for club legend Cedric 'Sugar Ray' Xulu for his fight against cancer, will stage the tournament at Ulundi Stadium in July.

Sokhela believes it is important to celebrate the history of the Durban-based outfit, who are unlikely to secure a return to the Absa Premiership at the end of the season following their relegation in 2014/15.

"When you lost direction a bit in life, you need to revisit the very essence of why you are existing in the first place," Sokhela said.

"I think now that is the journey that we are taking. So we need to revisit and capture the memory and the institutional memory of these people that were there and led to the club to being what it is today.

"Sugar Ray Xulu is a big legend of the club and that generation of players and the success that generation had is something that we, as the new generation of the club, must never lose.

"Soon enough these people will not be here. As we said, to have a direct descendant and the founder of the club, somebody who can tell you first hand the reasons why the club was formed etc, etc, etc.

"It goes far beyond his political position etc, etc. So we had to take a stand as risky to say 'okay, let's honour Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi because of his contribution to South Africa, to the club, and to the nation. It is far bigger then the role that he plays politically."

Meanwhile, Sokhela feels AmaZulu lacked continuity during their time in the topflight.

"I think when we were in the PSL, for all those years, the one thing that we didn't have was a solid foundation.

"Year in, year out there was no continuity, we were signing and releasing players and we were always in survival mode. There was never a long-term plan but I guess that goes with how we actually got into football.

"One year we were in Mvela and we bought Dynamos' status and we in the PSL and then survival, survival, survival, year in, year out. I think now this allows us to shift our focus and invest in young players and really sort out the feeder [team] into the main team."