South Africa-based Orlando Pirates’ Malawian forward Frank ‘Gabadinho’ Mhango says he has proved wrong critics who questioned the club’s decision to get him on board.
The Buccaneers talisman jshared the 2019/20 Premier Soccer League Golden Boot Award with Highlands Park’s Namibian forward Peter Shalulile.
He joined the Buccaneers at the beginning of the season from Bidvest Wits. At the time, some critics expressed concerns over his record at The Clever Boys where he scored only eleven goals in three seasons.
He was quoted by www.orlandopiratesfc.com as having said: “When I joined the club [Pirates], I read some [negative] comments on social media about me.
“Some people were saying, why sign Mhango, we need a goal scorer not Mhango and stuff like that. Obviously as players we try as much as possible to avoid reading negative comments, but sometimes it’s impossible to ignore them.
“But I believe in myself and that is why I never allowed the negative voices to get into my head.”
The 27-years-old prolific forward also said he was satisfied to beat his target.
He said: “Before the season started my target was to score 15 goals.
“I always believed that I have the ability to score goals and I did just that, but credit must also go to my teammates. I am not alone out there on the field; I have quality players around me who made this all possible.”
Mhango, whose winning goal against Stellenbosch FC ensured that the Buccaneers qualify for their third consecutive continental competition, singled out which of his goals was his favourite.
“All goals are good goals, but there are a few that even when you watch them again and again, they leave you saying “wow”.
“I would say my goal against Kaizer Chiefs was good. Oh, and the one against Polokwane City. It’s something that I have been working on at training. I even like to score similar goals when I play Fifa on PlayStation. It’s where I cut onto my right foot and then curl a shot to the top corner.”
Mhango also played down his individual award, saying what matters is the club.
“You can win a Top Goal Scorer award but at the end of the day, what matters most is what we achieve as a team. This club is due a trophy and it’s up to all of us to make it happen. I truly believe that with the players that we have we can achieve whatever we set our minds on,” he was further quoted as having said.
Former Flames forward Esau ‘Black Mamba’ Kanyenda, who starred in the South Africa top-flight with Jomo Cosmos, said Mhango had silenced doubting Thomases.
“He ignored all the negative talk and concentrated on his game. He is such a strong character and it was not surprising that he achieved his target,” said Kanyenda who missed the 2002 PSL Golden Boot Award by a whisker by scoring a goal short of the eventual winner Gilbert Mushangazhike.