Onyango lays down longevity secret

Premiership

Mamelodi Sundowns goalkeeper Denis Onyango has laid down the secret that has contributed towards him splendidly getting better as his age advances.

Onyango had to wait until just past his 30th birthday to blossom at Sundowns and six years later he is still getting even better as was demonstrated by his performance in the MTN8 final against Cape Town City over the weekend.

The Ugandan saved five of the seven penalties from City players, which lifted Sundowns to ending their 14 years wait for the MTN8.

Scroll through the gallery to see some of the best images of Mamelodi Sundowns' historic MTN8 triumph


"Credit to the team and the goalkeeping department led by coach Wendell (Robinson) because he knows how to manage us and all the players in the team," says Onyango who has been asked if he can keep going as long as the legendary Egyptian goalkeeper Essam El Hadary did.

El Hadary retired aged 47 last year. 

"He (Robinson) knows how to manage me and Kennedy (Mweene) and as goalkeepers, we try and get maximum rest and try to look after ourselves because it is our duty so that we stay in the game a little longer.

"With the help of the younger ones, we manage to keep up with the pace and we want to drag this thing as long as we can because it is our job and the more, we look after our bodies, stay focused and help the team win trophies, the more we keep earning for our families. So, I think the way we look after ourselves individually at home and on the pitch keeps us going as players," says Onyango who has the older Mweene as his main competition.

Onyango and Mweene have been the heroes of the MTN8 success following their incredible saves in the competition.

"Of course, we do a lot of work behind the scenes. It is the job of the analysts to give us information about the opposition penalties delivered to us via the goalkeeper coach. So, it is a lot of work that goes in at the training and through the videos, so it shows the analysts are doing a great job and the pass it on to the coaching staff who can then share ideas so that we see how to manage the penalties.

"You saw how Kennedy (Mweene) did well in the first game which shows that we work hard to try and get to know how and where they (opposition) kick their penalties,” says Onyango who is yet to concede in six league games.

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