Gaston Sirino during the 2022 Carling Black Label Cup© Samuel Shivambu - BackpagePixAuthor: Dumisani Koyana In 2018, Mamelodi Sundowns made sports headlines after signing talented Uruguayan midfielder Gaston Sirino. Expectedly, the football player has grown in leaps and bounds throughout his five-year career with the Brazilians. Moreover, Sirino has played a vital role in some of Masandawana's historic victories. Recently, the Mamelodi Sundowns Digital Magazine crew sat down with the dynamite attacker to find out about his journey with the club and what he has learned during his five-year era at Chloorkop, "Time flies! I still can't believe I have been with the club for this long. It proves that I'm enjoying my time here. The country has shown me love from day one. It is never easy being away from my country, but the way I have been received has made me feel at home."
The South American shared how having his family around made the transition easier, "Having my wife and kids here has helped me get through it. Additionally, acclimatizing to the culture was also a challenge, but the people here are kind, warm, and very accommodating. This has made it easier for me to settle in comfortably and focus on my football career," expressed Sirino.

The midfield maestro also shared that he was surprised by how football supporters from different teams harmoniously interact at the stadium. "At first, I was surprised to see supporters from opposing teams sitting together in the stands. That doesn't happen in Uruguay because our passion for the game is different. I guess diversity in South Africa makes it easier to have harmony among the fans," said Sirino.

Since his sensational move to Chloorkop, Gaston Sirino, also known as 'Papi', has made more than one hundred and fifty appearances for Masandawana, having made his debut in a cameo role against Platinum Stars (now defunct) on the 20th of January 2018.
Gaston Sirino during the 2021/22 Season Celebrations after winning the DSTV Premiership© Sydney Mahlangu - BackpagePix"I still recall how shocked I was when I saw the guys singing before the game with Collen (Baloyi) leading the gents in a song. Where I come from, these things don't happen, but I slowly got used to the songs and now can sing along with the fans. I must admit that the Haka Matorokisi dance we do at the stadium with the Yellow Nation is very sentimental as they sing their lungs out at every game," added Sirino.

It did not take long for the Montevideo-born footballer to find his feet in Mzansi as he scored his first goal against Maritzburg United in the semi-final of the Nedbank Cup in April 2018.
“The standard of football in Africa has gradually improved since I moved here, and the number of African players signed to European clubs has increased. At the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, an African team made history by going all the way to the semi-finals for the first time. There are also teams that we play against in the CAF Champions League that are doing really well. For example, Al Ahly beat Flamengo from Brazil and went on to play Real Madrid at the FIFA Club World Cup earlier this year. We are also doing well domestically, but I want to win the Champions League, get the second star, and ensure that Mamelodi Sundowns becomes a powerhouse in African football,” expressed Sirino.

The 32-year-old has had his fair share of ups and downs during his time at the club. He opened up about a challenging period in his career and explained how he overcame it, “It really affected me and my game, but I believe it needed to happen so that I could learn from it. I saw an opportunity to elevate myself and become a better person. I accepted what transpired and had to focus on my main goal, which is to do well for the team and my family. I have ambitions to play more games and contribute to the success of Mamelodi Sundowns as the club has done so much for me,” expressed Sirino.

Gaston Sirino now qualifies to play for Bafana Bafana as he has acquired South African citizenship. Once this reached the news it was reported by football publications that there is a huge role he could potentially play if he was called up to the National Team.
Sirino with fellow South American Marcelo Allende during a training session© Samuel Shivambu - BackpagePixThe Digital Magazine crew wanted to get his thoughts on the possibility of playing for Bafana Bafana, “I have had a great time in this beautiful country, I love everything about it and if I get presented with the chance to don the national team colors I would jump at the opportunity, but the decision does not rest with me. There is no player born in South America who has played for Bafana Bafana and if I receive the call, I would be happy to represent this beautiful nation”, concluded Sirino.
QUICK ONE TWO’SBest player/s faced?Keagan Dolly and Ali Maâloul.Best memory since coming to South Africa?Scoring in the Nedbank Cup Final to win a treble.Most skillful player that you have played with or against?Themba Zwane.
His football skills and style of play are admirable.