Mokwena breaks silence on Kaizer Chiefs-linked Zungu’s surprising exit from Mamelodi Sundowns

In June 2024, midfielder Bongani Zungu announced a shocking exit from Mamelodi Sundowns, a team he joined two seasons ago from French Ligue 2 side Amiens. 

It was a surprising announcement from the midfielder who enjoys a good relationship with Rhulani Mokwena. In the concluded campaign, the 31-year-old played 30 games for Masandawana across all competitions and provided three assists.

The Premier Soccer League champions are set to compete in all four domestic competitions and the international ones – Caf Champions League, African Football League, and the Fifa Club World Cup. Zungu's experience could have been vital for the Brazilians, but that will not be the case.

His void surely needs to be filled ahead of the 2024/ 25 campaign.

Rhulani Mokwena

Mokwena breaks silence after Zungu's exit

The 37-year-old tactician concedes it was going to be tough keeping a player whose contract with the club was set to expire at the end of June 2023.

“When contracts come to an end, it is always quite complicated, because it’s the agent, it’s the player, it’s the club,” Mokwena told Power FM.

“I don’t get involved in that space… it is more for the sporting director and the football club. [But] of course, of course, yeah! [I would have liked to keep Zungu] like I would’ve loved to keep Cassius [Mailula], just like I would’ve loved to keep Haashim Domingo.”

‘You gotta move on' – Mokwena reiterates love for Masandawana & wants to improve it

Mokwena is now focusing on how to improve the PSL champions, even after the midfielder's exit insisting everything can't go his way.

“Sometimes in life, you don’t get what you want, and that’s the reality of the situation,” he continued. Football is even worse because you gotta move on. My love for any player at  Mamelodi Sundowns doesn’t override my love for the club. My love for the club and doing what’s right for the football club.

“As I said, even in that sense, that is far more important than anything else.”

Kaizer Chiefs defender set for exit, close to completing next move
Picture by Fareed Kotb/Sports Inc Photo by Icon Sport – Photo by Icon Sport

Is Kaizer Chiefs Zungu's next destination?

Amakhosi are rebuilding and will be signing a few established players to help them challenge for major competitions next season.

However, former Downs player Sello Mahlangu believes it will not be logical to ditch Masandawana for the Glamour Boys.

“I don't think he can leave Sundowns for a local team. It won't make business sense to anyone involved,” he told SNL24.

“His next move after Sundowns should be going back to Europe. Him moving to Europe will also benefit Bafana Bafana,

“I don't think he will move to the likes of Chiefs in terms of financial implications. At his age, he is not going to accept anything less than what he is currently paid.  

“Nowadays, money is more important than game-time. Money has power, and it brings a will to win. Looking at the former Sundowns players who went to Chiefs, they achieved nothing. I hope this is just a rumour because we still need him more at Sundowns.”

Mokwena breaks silence on Kaizer Chiefs-linked Zungu’s surprising exit from Mamelodi Sundowns
Willis Sob

Willis Sob is an experienced journalist who has been in the game since 2009, covering major assignments around the continent.
His hunger for African football is unmatched, always getting the best angles and facts to feed the fans and quench their thirst.