© sundownsfc.co.zaAuthor: John AliuAs the curtain rises on the new season, there is a renewed sense of belief and determination within the Mamelodi Sundowns camp, igniting their passion to script new chapters of unprecedented success.Coach Rulani Mokwena will be spearheading this charge in what marks his first full season as Brazilians’ Head Coach. One of his major tasks will be to guide Bafana Ba Style through six competitions in the 2023/24 campaign.
On being entrusted with the responsibility of leading the Tshwane giants in the new season, Coach Rulani expressed, “Being in charge of this great team is an incredible privilege—one I deeply appreciate and never take for granted. It fills me with a deep sense of purpose and drives me to give my best every day. I am aware of the faith that has been placed in me and it ignites a fire within me to lead this talented group of players with passion and dedication.”

The Johannesburg-born tactician, still unbeaten in 20 league games as the Head Coach, is excited about his side’s quest for an unprecedented seventh-straight Premier Soccer League title in the upcoming season.

“As the saying goes, history has no blank pages. The opportunity to secure a seventh league title holds immense significance for the entire Yellow Nation family. What we have achieved already goes beyond talent, capacity and opportunity; it’s a testament to our proactive thinking, a principle that Sundowns has constantly embraced. We are determined to write our names into the history books and leave a lasting legacy for generations to come,” Coach Mokwena stated.
Preparations for the new season have been thorough, consisting of three intensive phases that culminated in a pre-season tour of the Netherlands. Coach Rulani expressed his delight with his side’s unbeaten record, having secured three victories and one draw against high-quality opposition during the tour.

“We faced very strong teams with different playing styles and this experience has been helpful in improving our conditioning and understanding the impact of hectic schedules and limited recovery periods that we will encounter when the season resumes. Kudos to the various members of the technical team for their overall contributions to ensuring that we are in peak condition for what promises to be a busy campaign ahead,” Coach Mokwena emphasized.
In addition to their participation in the DStv Premier League, the Brazilians will also be vying against some of the finest teams on the continent in pursuit of the prestigious CAF Champions League title.
Masandawana will further take part in the MTN8 competition, the Nedbank Cup, the Carling Knockout Cup and the inaugural African Football League.
© Sundowns MediaWith a demanding schedule ahead, the club has fortified its squad with the signings of Lesiba Nku, Junior Mendieta, Lucas Ribeiro Costa and Thapelo Maseko.

During the pre-season tour of the Netherlands, Coach Rulani had the opportunity to integrate some of the recruits, with Costa (scoring two goals) and Maseko both finding the back of the net in the win against Sparta Rotterdam and the draw against KAA Gent.

“With the addition of newly signed players, we had the opportunity to experiment with new techniques from a tactical perspective. What excites me the most about these players is the different dimensions they bring to the team as we approach the new season. Their unique skills and attributes have added depth and versatility to our squad,” Mokwena added.

When asked about which competition or opponents he is looking forward to the most, the Sundowns coach stated, “We have seen how teams in the league and on the continental stage have made substantial investments in both playing and coaching capacities. Nevertheless, our primary focus remains on ourselves, as we strive to set even higher standards and constantly improve. This quest for excellence stimulates consistency and we are determined to approach each match with dedication and determination.”

In his message to the supporters ahead of the new season, Coach Rulani states, “They should look forward to an improved team and we have high expectations for the players to show significant progress in every aspect of their game. With the additional reinforcements, we now have various options to explore in our playing style. Our primary objective is to win games whilst entertaining our supporters with attacking football. Therefore, we urge them to come out in large numbers on match days, as their presence will be instrumental throughout the season.”
Coach Rulani Mokwena and his troops are geared up for a season filled with numerous opportunities to further etch their names into the history books. From the league battles to the intense cup showdowns, the pursuit of perfection remains the vision embraced by everyone associated with the Yellow Nation family.