Thanduyise Khuboni - Fact File

Khuboni Working Hard To Get Back In The National Team

As abafana bes`thende captain and one of the longest serving players in the side, Thanduyise Khuboni is known for his command of the midfield. He had an interview with Sabie Chili, about the situation at the club.

Personal Information
Full Name: Thanduyise Khuboni
Date Of Birth: 23 May 1986
Place of birth: Clermont, Durban

Position: Midfielder
Nickname: Gonondo, Sthakathi, Mshumayeli
Jersey no: 5
Current Club: Golden Arrows

Previous Clubs: Nylon City, Kwadabeka FC, FUBS, Young Mates (all amateur)
Honours: 2009 MTN8 winner, 23 Bafana caps

Hi Sthakathi, you were reported to be ready to leave and perhaps move to Kaizer Chiefs or Sundowns. What happened with that and are you still looking to move from Arrows?
After the departure of Manqana, Dikgacoi and Sangweni, I decided to stay, as the team would have suffered a great deal. I had to sit down with the management and tell them that I would stay, although I did want to go. When the time is right, I will leave, knowing that the situation has improved. There were offers, I cannot lie. I`m happy here but I need to grow and someday try my luck somewhere else.

Many people expected you to become a Bafana regular after you were in the squad for the 2010 FIFA World Cup, but that didn`t happen.
Honestly, I still want to play for the National team. Unfortunately for me, there was a change of coach, and things fell apart for me. I`ll keep working hard at Golden Arrows and hopefully the coach will notice me and call me up one day. It hurts not to play for Bafana Bafana, but it`s up to the coach Gordon Igesund to choose the players.

We have failed to qualify for the World Cup in Brazil in June this year. Where do you think it went wrong?
I can`t tell you where it went wrong. We have all the resources as a nation, but it hurts when we always talk about building.

Getting back to you, there was once a promise that you`d move to play overseas, but that never materialized. What impact did this have on your game?
My agent told me there was a move he was organizing but nothing came up. I honestly don`t know what happened with the move, but my agent is the one who can clarify that. Obviously that had a huge impact on my performance. As a result, I ended up losing my place in the national team. I really hoped that representing my country in the World Cup might open doors for me to go and play overseas. I haven`t lost hope though and I hope one day I will get a call-up. I know playing for your country can make it easy to move and play overseas.

You are fighting relegation every season with Golden Arrows while your former Bafana teammates are making it big either locally or overseas. How do you feel about that?
It hurts, I cannot lie to you. I played together with Kagiso Dikgacoi at Arrows and guys like Bongani Khumalo in the national team. Now when you see them going overseas and making it big, it hurts. I thought after the World Cup I would also get a call to attend trials overseas, but this is football and things don`t always go the way you wish. I played very well in the World Cup, especially against France. I played freely and expressed my talents against the best players like Franck Ribery and Florent Malouda and we won that game. For me that was a dream come true, but I`m a professional and I have to carry on.

It seems many Arrows players have decided to move on and join Orlando Pirates. Examples are Njabulo Manqana, Bheka Phakathi, Siyabonga Sangweni and Thamsanqa Gabuza.
I agree with you on that one. Well I think Pirates like the way Arrows players play. There are many Arrows players who joined Pirates. Of course Bucs is a big team. Maybe those players always dreamed of playing for them. Playing for a team like Pirates is a huge motivation.

You seemed to have a good relationship with Mato Madlala.
Well, my relationship with the Madlala`s goes back a long way. I hope you remember Bro Rocky Madlala. He is the one who brought me to Arrows. I met Mato through him and we took it from there.  He used to tell Mato that these are the boys who will grow up at Arrows and be the leaders of the team in the future and fortunately that is happening. The sad part is that he is not here to see us flourishing.

Arrows are in 16th position on the log, with 13 points from 21 matches. What’s your message to the supporters about the team?
I’d like to ask them to be patient with us, I know it is difficult and the remaining games are too little.

Thank you for your time Sthakathi, all the best with your team and in your career. 
Thanks my brother.