Mamelodi Sundowns head coach Rulani Mokwena has praised the work of the club’s academy after the fine breakout season by Cassius Mailula.

Mailula, 21, has scored five goals and assisted two more in six DStv Premiership appearances so far.

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He has held his own in the absence of Peter Shalulile and Abubeker Nasir, helping Downs to win nine successive league matches.

Mokwena, who previously asked to give the player time to develop, praised the club’s youth work when being asked about the explosive form of the 21-year-old.

“A lot of compliments must go to the academy,” he said.

“The coaches in the academy did well, consistently over the years. Percy coming, the late Madisha coming, Khaya Shozi coming, even some players who didn’t play for the first team of Mamelodi Sundowns.

“A lot of compliments need to go to the coaches that are in the academy, Mike Manzini, Sapula, Surprise, David Notoane, Shawn Bishop.

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“We have a Sporting Director who works close with the academy, Flemming Berg. A lot of good work is being done in the academy, some good younsters coming through.

“You’ve got to give a lot of kudos to the academy and the people that work at that level at the football club.”


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