Harare – It’s been less than a year since Pitso Mosimane did the cross-continental trek from South African giants to Egyptian heavyweights Al Ahly, but in that time he has proven that he is a real gem of a soccer coach.
In nine months, he has won four trophies with Al Ahly, and it is no wonder that club president Mahmoud El-Khatib purrs whenever he is asked about the 56-yerar-old Mosimane.
“I stand before you in peace and in pride. I saw a diamond in South Africa and I went alone to bring it over here, whilst no one believed in Pitso Mosimane,” said El-Khatib.
And he does not regret shelling out a massive US$4 million a year to retain Mosimane’s services.
“The first time I saw my diamond, my team was six years without winning the CAF Champions League, when I brought him over to Cairo the doors of Africa opened and he brought to my hands the desired medal of Africa.
“I know a lot of mourning voices back home in Egypt are now angry because today Pitso Mosimane has once again delivered not one, not two, not three, but the fourth title to my hands. Now he does not owe me anything, I am the one who owes him a worthy contract. No club has ever defeated Ahly by 5-0 in CCL, but only Pitso Mosimane did.
“When I hire, I hire the brain, not skin colour. I know Qatar has seen my diamond, hopefully there are no thieves around to steal it,” laughed the Al Ahly president as he made reference to the possibility of Qatar offering Mosimane the men’s national team coaching job ahead of the country hosting the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
Since his appointment as Al Ahly coach in September 2020, Mosimane has overseen 44 matches for the Egyptian giants in all competitions, winning 31 of those games, drawing nine and losing just four times.
Mosimane, evidently enjoying his time in North Africa, recently turned down an offer to coach the South Africa men’s national team.
“Despite having only two years remaining in my deal with Al Ahly I chose to continue because I want to win the Champions League again and achieve more titles with the club.
“I informed El-Khatib that I am staying with the team. In SA, all people wanted me there but I preferred to stay with Al Ahly as it’s a big opportunity for me,” said Mosimane.