Rhulani Mokwena: Why triumph turns to turmoil despite potential new beginnings at Wydad Casablanca

Rhulani Mokwena: Why triumph turns to turmoil despite potential new beginnings at Wydad Casablanca

Festus Chuma 11:15 - 11.07.2024

Rhulani Mokwena reels from his abrupt firing by Sundowns despite potential coaching opportunities with Wydad Casablanca.

Former Mamelodi Sundowns head coach Rhulani Mokwena finds himself at a personal and professional crossroads, grappling with his recent dismissal despite potential opportunities on the horizon.

At 37, Mokwena was unexpectedly dismissed from his role at Sundowns, a club with which he spent over a decade shaping his identity as both an assistant and a head coach.

Despite being linked with a promising coaching role at Moroccan powerhouse Wydad Casablanca, Mokwena admits to still reeling from the abrupt end to his tenure at Sundowns.

"The wound is still fresh, and I want to recover," Mokwena shared with Sunday World.

Speculations about his next move include rumors of a three-year contract offer from Wydad AC, a team known for its success in the CAF Champions League.

However, Mokwena's current focus is on healing and regaining his passion for football, which seems to have dimmed in the wake of his departure.

"Right now, I just want to recharge at Black Poison," he mentioned, referring to his temporary stint coaching an amateur team to rejuvenate his spirits.

His situation is complicated by a reported fallout with Sundowns' sporting director suggesting that his departure was not just a professional decision but also a personal conflict.

Despite his achievements, including multiple league titles and the inaugural African Football League with Sundowns, the sudden end to his role has been a significant setback.

"I am hearing a lot of things and my agent is handling those things," Mokwena stated.

Mokwena's agent, Steve Kapelushnick, confirmed the intense interest in the coach's expertise, underscoring his successful stint at Sundowns.

"Obviously everything is still so fresh at the moment, but our phones haven’t stopped ringing," Kapelushnick said.

The emotional impact of his dismissal cannot be underestimated.

Mokwena himself has spoken about losing a bit of his passion for football—a sentiment that underscores the depth of his current challenges.

Speaking on Marawa Sports Worldwide, he revealed, "Hopefully, I can revitalize myself and I can get a passion for football and coaching because I have lost it a little bit."

The football community, particularly in South Africa, has rallied around Mokwena, with many expressing shock and disappointment at Sundowns' decision.

His potential move to Wydad Casablanca is seen by many as not just a step towards recovery but also a significant opportunity to prove his resilience and capability on an international stage.

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