Former Mamelodi Sundowns attacking midfielder Sibusiso Vilakazi has broken his silence over his exit from TS Galaxy, saying he was “shocked” to hear how coach Sead Ramovic spoke about him in public.
Vilakazi, 33, a five-time Premier Soccer League winner with Masandawana, opted for a new challenge ahead of the 2022/23 campaign, linking up with TS Galaxy.
However, while he started the first five games, things didn’t work out as planned and he got less and less game-time under Ramovic.
In January, the club and the player then agreed to part ways amicably, before Ramovic decided to share some insights as to way the Rockets parted with Vilakazi, indicating he didn’t work hard enough in training – which even got the player’s ex-coach Pitso Mosimane come out in defence of his former player.
Vilakazi himself has now for the first time addressed his exit from Galaxy and Ramovic’s public criticism, saying the coach never shared this feedback with him.
“He never mentioned anything to me about not working hard and the way I do things when I was still at the club,” he told Isolezwe, as translated into English.
“I was shocked when I saw on the news that he spoke like that. If that’s the how he felt, I would like to apologise.
“I made an agreement with the team to cut ties because things didn’t work out well and that happens in football. What he said I don’t know where it comes from, I’m shocked.”
The former PSL Footballer of the Season also opened up on the health situation of his child, which impacted his mental state and training, before discussing his demotion to the club’s DStv Diski Challenge team.
“My child’s illness disturbed me a lot. It got to the point where we couldn’t sleep anymore. He was fainting and convulsing.
“At night this thing has been happening to him 10 to 14 times. We had to take him out of school. This continued even when he was in the hospital,” he continued.
“I was getting a phone call even while I was in the gym, and I was told that the situation is bad. I ended up asking the team to give me time to pay attention to my child’s health because his illness was bothering me too, but I continued to go to work. My child needed me more than football.
“I came back to continue in the team even though he had not recovered before the trip to Turkey. In January, things started to improve.
“That’s when I also started to be able to focus on football. We played against Swallows, after that the coach told me not to come to the gym the next day.
“That’s when I started training with the DStv Diski Challenge team, waiting to be called back to the big squad but that didn’t happen. Due to the circumstances that I saw were not good for me at Diski after a week I went back to the coach to talk to him because I want to help the team.”
Ultimately, though, things between Ramovic and Vilakazi didn’t work out, resulting in the player to speak to president Tim Sukazi to get his clearance.
“I humbled myself, I apologised to him and to all the people that I may have disappointed or who saw that I was not giving myself,” he added.
“But the coach told me that he doesn’t need me because of the way he plays and the tactics he uses, and told me to talk to Tim [Sukazi]. I said goodbye, we shook hands. That’s when I parted ways with the team.”
Vilakazi is currently a free agent and could still join a new team, even after the January window has been closed.