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How Dubai trip helped Mamelodi Sundowns star Mokoena dethrone PSL Midfielder of the Season Jali

22:42 GMT+3 12/01/2023
Teboho Mokoena, Mamelodi Sundowns, August 2022
Mamelodi Sundowns' in-form central midfielder Teboho Mokoena has divulged the secret behind his scintillating form for the Tshwane giants.
  • Mokoena has become a consistent performer this season
  • His performances have kept Downs' vice-captain Jali on the bench
  • The 25-year-old is set to face his former club next week

WHAT HAPPENED? The Bethlehem-born player has been a consistent performer for Masandawana this term and his brilliant displays have relegated Andile Jali to the bench.
Mokoena was named Man of the Match following Sundowns' latest game which was against Chippa United on Tuesday having scored the opening goal.
The Bafana Bafana international admitted that he struggled to adapt to Masandawana's intensity after he joined the club from SuperSport United midway through last season.
Therefore, Mokoena took a trip to Dubai, UAE where he did some intense workouts in order to improve his fitness and he has been one of Sundowns' fittest players this term.

WHAT DID MOKOENA SAY?: “Last season I was struggling with the intensity when I got here," Mokoena told the media.

"So, in the pre-season I told myself that I need to work on that, and I think my Dubai trip helped me a lot with that because it was very hot that side and I did a lot of work on my endurance and my stamina and I came back in a better shape.

“I am enjoying myself as a six because I think the competition, we have in the team is what is making me a better player. The competition in the squad is what is making Mamelodi Sundowns a good team."

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Jali was one of the best players in the country last term - winning the PSL Midfielder of the Season, Nedbank Cup Player of the Tournament and MTN8 Last Man Standing awards.
However, the 32-year-old accomplished player has lost his place in the team to Mokoena this season with the former having made just six starts in the PSL. 
Mokoena, on the other hand, has started 15 out of the 16 league matches that Masandawana have played in the current campaign and scored twice in the process.

WHAT IS NEXT FOR SUNDOWNS? The Brazilians are set go head to head with Mokoena's former club, SuperSport on Monday.

Mokoena played 60 minutes as Sundowns lost 2-1 to SuperSport in the first-round league encounter in September last year.