Mamelodi Sundowns and Bafana Bafana midfielder Bongani Zungu has dismissed suggestions he failed in Europe.

The Mamelodi Sundowns midfielder Bongani Zungu spent seven largely unsuccessful years on the continent — with Vitória Guimarães SC in Portugal, Amiens SC in France and Rangers in Scotland — before returning to Chloorkop in August.

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According to Times Live, Zungu has only made two appearances in the 2022-23 DStv Premiership — against AmaZulu and Marumo Gallants.

He was a late replacement during the 3-0 friendly Carling Black Label Cup semifinal against the AmaZulu on Saturday.

“Nothing went wrong,” he said when asked what happened at his clubs in Europe at a Carling Black Label event on Thursday.

“I made a decision with my family to come back to South Africa because of personal reasons. I don’t have regrets about my career. It is just like anything in life where you go through ups and downs.

“That’s what happened with me. I am not the last person who will go through such an experience. Other people face similar situations and coming back doesn’t mean there was something wrong or I failed.”

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Zungu, who is aiming to play a big role for the Brazilians in the group stages of the Caf Champions League, added that he is happy with what he achieved in Europe.

“People can say whatever they want. I am happy because I came from nothing and I worked hard to play in Europe. I came back because of personal reasons and that’s all.

“My reasons [for coming back] had nothing to do with football, they are about life – I just made a decision. Maybe you are thinking contracts, but unfortunately I can’t tell you because it is personal.

“There is nothing about failing.I am happy, my family is proud of me and I am proud of myself. Now I am at Sundowns and there is no looking back. I have to try to help the team reach even greater heights.”

Having tasted premiership football again, Zungu said the standard of the local game has improved since he left in 2016.

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“The game has changed, the game is much faster and there is a lot of talent. Teams play football now, there is not too much parking of the bus, and a lot of teams are doing very well and improving.”

Premiership leaders and defending champions Sundowns return from the seven-week Fifa break for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar with a tasty league encounter against Orlando Pirates at Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria on December 31.


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