Pitso Mosimane, a renowned South African football coach, has successfully found a new team after leaving African giants Al Ahly, who are based in Egypt. On Sunday, September 25, Al-Ahli Jeddah in Saudi Arabia officially announced Mosimane as their new head coach.
“Coach, welcome. Pitso Mosimane has been named as our first football team’s new manager” the club announced via social media.
Welcome, Coach! 💚🤍
— Al-Ahli Saudi Club (@ALAHLI_FCEN) September 25, 2022
“Coach Pitso and his technical team of Kabelo Rangoaga (fitness trainer), Musi Matlaba, and Kyle Solomon (performance analysts) are ready for the challenge,” Mosimane’s agency MT Sports confirmed in its statement. “The decorated South African technical team will head to Saudi Arabia from September 2022 to join Al-Ahli in Jeddah.”
With this job, Mosimane’s three-month break from coaching comes to an end. The super coach, who was born in Kagiso, paused to consider his options after finishing a largely successful stint in Egypt.
Mosimane reached three consecutive CAF Champions League finals during his 21-month stint with one of the top teams in the world of football, winning two of them. To this collection, he also added the CAF Super Cup, the Egypt Cup, and a bronze medal from the Fifa Club World Cup.
The 58-year-old coach is now expected to help Jeddah’s Al-Ahli achieve comparable success. The squad had never been demoted before the 2021/22 season, despite being one of the founding members of the Saudi Pro League. Al-Ahli unexpectedly received a league downgrade after being second-to-last with only 32 points in 30 games.
It was a difficult pill for the three-time Saudi champions to swallow. The Jeddah juggernauts consistently achieved the top four results between 2013 and 2020. Prior to placing second the next two seasons, they last won the league championship in 2016.
The Royal, as the club is popularly referred to by its supporters, has commenced their tenure in this foreign environment indifferently. The 2012 Asian Champions League runners-up have participated in five Division One game so far. They have won two of them, tied two, and lost one. With eight points, the squad is currently in seventh place, four points behind early leaders Al-Akhdoud. The team management will be relying on Mosimane to swiftly reverse their fortunes as they struggle mightily to reclaim their position in the elite of Asian and Saudi Arabian football.
“With coach Pitso Mosimane’s experience and his track record of being the football coach turnaround strategist, the CAF Pro Licence coaching graduate (who is one of the most successful coaches in Africa), is more than suitable for this role,” said MT Sports.“The opportunity to lead such a prestigious club in Saudi Arabia presents itself as the perfect project to yield a win-win situation for both parties.”
Mosimane links to DSTV Premiership
Prior to this move, Mosimane had been connected to a number of DStv Premiership teams as well as another Saudi club, Al Nassr. However, none of those plans were ever carried out.
Although he was rumored to both Kaizer Chiefs and the Orlando Pirates, Jose Riveiro and Arthur Zwane were instead chosen by the Soweto giants. A return to Al Ahly for the former Bafana Bafana coach was also rumored, but that move also fell through.
When Mosimane finished his CAF Pro Licence studies in June 2022 after beginning the program in 2018, he strengthened his already impressive résumé even more. According to Danny Jordaan, president of the South African Football Association, “this is to confirm that his contribution, his coaching talent is recognized, not only on the continent but throughout the world.” Mosimane’s accomplishment was announced in August.
Mosimane’s departure to Saudi Arabia marks his second overseas club assignment after his time in Egypt. It’s his first trip outside of Africa. Mosimane formerly served as the manager of teams like Mamelodi Sundowns and SuperSport United. Between 2010 and 2012, he served on the senior men’s football team of South Africa’s Bafana Bafana’s head coach. DM
Mamelodi Sundowns football club
Pitso Mosimane took control of the Mamelodi Sundowns Football Club in December 2012. He set ground-breaking records while managing Sundowns. He also succeeded in winning the first PSL championship for Mamelodi Sundowns in eight years during the 2013–14 season, adding to his list of accomplishments as an experienced manager.
He has won 11 titles in all, including the CAF Super Cup and Champions League. The International Federation of Football History and Statistics (IFFHS) recognized him as the tenth best manager in the world. Mosimane won the 2016 Global Confederation of African Football (CAF) award for manager of the year in Abuja, Nigeria, in January 2017.
Since taking over as Mamelodi Sundowns’ manager in 2012, Mosimane has won five Premiership titles. He served as the club’s rock as it won its 10th league trophy, or “La Decima,” in its history.
Al Ahly Football Club
Following his selection as Head Coach, Pitso Mosimane joined Al Ahly Football Club in October 2020. Together with his technical staff, they managed Al Ahly to win the Egyptian Premier League, finish third in the FIFA Club World Cup, and complete the Egyptian Premier League (2020-2021). They took home the 2019–2020 Egyptian Cup and CAF Champions League titles (2019-2020). It was quite an accomplishment for Mosimane to end the team’s seven-year losing streak by winning the CAF Super Cup in Qatar (2020) and the CAF Champions League (2020–2021). In the one year that Mosimane has been with the Red Devils, he has contributed to making sure that they would realize their 2021 CAF Champions League “La Decima”
A bag of trophies
Nobody can deny the former Sundowns manager’s impressive accomplishments: in Egypt, he won the Caf Champions League twice, the Caf Super Cup twice, and the Egyptian Cup with Ahly. (Under predecessor Rene Weiler, the team had already won the Egyptian league title when he joined the team in October 2020.)Additionally, he twice consecutively tied the third-place finish achieved by the Egyptian squad at the Fifa Club World Cup. With three continental championships under his belt—three to be exact—Mosimane is unquestionably among the best African coaches. Add the 2016 Caf Champions League success with Sundowns to that total. Furthermore, he was the only non-Egyptian African coach in command.
A stay longer than many
Working for a large organization like Ahly has always come with a lot of pressure. Adapting to a new culture where English is not the native tongue also requires effort. It’s impressive that he stayed for 619 days and 97 matches despite having a lot to deal with. Only renowned Portuguese coach Manual Jose (1977 days, 252 matches) has coached more games for Ahly during the past 20 years. In the 628 days he spent in charge between 2016 and 2018, Hossam El Badry managed 95 matches, two fewer than Mosimane.
PITSO MOSIMANE’S RECORD AND TROPHIES AS AL AHLY COACH
Since joining Al Ahly from Mamelodi Sundowns in 2020, Mosimane has overseen 97 competitive games. He won an astounding 65 of the 97 games, drew 22, and lost just 10, notably twice in the CAF Champions League against his former team Sundowns.
During his time with Al Ahly, Mosimane unquestionably solidified his reputation as one of Africa’s best by winning back-to-back CAF Champions League championships. In his first few months in charge, he won his first CAF Champions League championship; his second came in his first full season. If Al Ahly had defeated Wydad Athletic Club in the May final, Mosimane might have won three consecutive CAF Champions League championships.
During his time as head coach, Mosimane led Al Ahly to two CAF Super Cup victories and the Egypt Cup. However, the Red Devils had already won the Egyptian Premier League (EPL) when he was present, and Mosimane isn’t actually given much credit for the victory. Last but not least, Mosimane beat the odds by leading Al Ahly to a third-place finish twice at the FIFA Club World Cup and earning the bronze medals.
On Sunday, the club released the information. Al-Ahli Saudi competes in the nation’s First Division, the second tier, and after five games of the 2022–2023 season, they are in the seventh position.
Ahli, who have three Saudi Pro League championships to their credit (1977-1978, 1983-1984, and 2015-2016), was demoted as the season’s second-last finishers and will be relying on Mosimane to get them back into the top division.
After they were demoted from the Saudi Pro League for the first time in the club’s history after placing 15th with only 32 points, he will assist in their ascent back to the top division. Mosimane joins a Yelo League First Division squad that is currently suffering, sitting seventh in the standings after five games with just eight points after winning two, drawing one, and giving up one loss.
PITSO MOSIMANE’S PREDECESSOR
At Ahli, Robert Dante Siboldi, an Uruguayan coach who joined the team earlier this year, is succeeded by Mosimane. After replacing Kosovan coach Besnik Hasi, his job was to prevent the team from being relegated from the top division. With seven games left before the end of the previous season, the team fired Hasi following a run of disappointing performances.
As early as September 2021, there were calls for the coach to be fired after the team’s first seven games resulted in just five points and no victories.Siboldi came close to saving the team from relegation but ultimately fell short by only one point.
Al Ahli, who needed a victory to avoid the chop, drew with Al Shabab on the final day of the league and lost the opportunity to compete in Saudi Arabia. After accruing 32 points in 30 games, the 1937-founded team experienced its first relegation.Siboldi led them for a time, but his efforts of one victory, four ties, and two losses could not keep them from losing.