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Mokwena: Watenga's success lies in the journey

Co-coach Rulani Mokwena says Ismail Watenga can have a bright future with Mamelodi Sundowns.

The 27-year-old Ugandan goalkeeper was signed by the Brazilians in 2020 but was immediately sent out on loan to Chippa United, where he has spent the past two seasons.

He has seen his game-time limited with the Chilli Boys, however, and made just 10 appearances in the recently completed DStv Premiership campaign.

Speaking during a visit to Uganda, Mokwena told Football256: "We like Watenga so much and we have tried to invest in him.

"We sent him out to Chippa to get more playing time.

"He started reasonably well but unfortunately, he did not get much playing time towards the end but I believe that was due to the change of coaches at Chippa which disturbed his momentum a little bit.

"Watenga is a very good goalkeeper with very good attributes, his agility is excellent, his speed and shot-stopping are very good and maybe he only needs to improve when it comes to build-up play."

Mokwena likened Watenga's journey to that of fellow countryman Denis Onyango.

"Watenga's desire should be to follow in Onyango’s footsteps because he has got a huge potential and hopefully, he can be at the club and play," he said.

"As far as Onyango is concerned it took him time to stamp his position at Mamelodi.

"We all remember that he went to Mpumalanga Black Aces and BidVest Wits on loan before he came back and became Sundowns' number one goalkeeper.

"He came back, and he has been very successful and maybe Watenga's success lies in the journey of Onyango and he will need to pick up a little bit more from what Onynago went through."