Downs defender opens up on frustration

Premiership

A Mamelodi Sundowns defender has opened up on the frustration of his current situation that sees him missing the football pitch for an extended period.

Ricardo Nascimento spent half of last year back home in Brazil after undergoing surgery on an injured groin during the off-season.

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The 33-year-old, who has been a key figure for Sundowns since arriving in 2016, endured a frustrating six months away from the pitch before returning in January.

Having since played nine games, the lanky centre-back is now once again left frustrated, albeit due to circumstances beyond his own control. 

“I did my operation and rehab at home in Brazil. My recovery was great and I felt confident coming back that I could play at my best,” Nascimento said on the club’s website.

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“I have played nine games this season, I feel good and happy – I missed football after six months on the sidelines. Training like this [at home] is good, but it’s not the same thing. 

“I miss the ball and the pitch. It’s tough, I felt like I was picking up steam and hungry to add value to the team.”

Having plied his trade in his homeland, Romania and Portugal before coming to South Africa, Nascimento now considers Mzansi his second home and has opened up on his experience in the PSL thus far.

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“I have spent four years here, South Africa is like my second home – SA was a lovely surprise. I came from Europe, where I had played for over six years," he added.

“At first when I initially got the offer [from Sundowns], I was sceptical – having not watched any PSL games, but it’s been a great surprise.

“I think the league will kick off [after the lockdown], but the most important thing right now is the coronavirus. We all need to be safe and then get back on the pitch."

Check out the gallery below to view the PSL's most valuable defenders

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