Mauricio Affonso recently made his much-awaited return to the playing squad for Mamelodi Sundowns after recovering from a niggling injury that has kept him on the sidelines since December of 2019. The Uruguayan striker made a cameo appearance over the weekend during the win against Stellenbosch FC in the DStv Premiership. The lanky target man spoke about being on the field and said: “The truth is I am very happy, I was very eager to return and be able to help the team by contributing my part. I felt great satisfaction to be able to play again after a year and I felt good again. When the referee ended the game I felt great emotions and satisfaction.”
Affonso made a great impact when he joined and showcased the best of his talents when he scored a brace in the 2019 Final of the Telkom Knockout against Maritzburg United.
Speaking on how he coped mentally with the challenges he faced whilst being out, Mauricio said: “The year was difficult and very long for me, I have never had to live this situation of having to recover from such a long and annoying injury. It was clear in my head that I had to play again because soccer is my passion and that was my goal. It was not easy at all, I was fighting with this setback day by day, sometimes I was feeling better and sometimes I did not. I also had the help of a sports psychologist which helped a lot. Today I can say that I achieved it and I am back on a soccer field”, said Affonso.
Affonso’s return could not have been timed better, with the season entering the business as The Brazilians fight for silverware domestically in the DStv Premiership and the Nedbank Cup as well as continentally in the CAF Champions League. The frontline currently marshalled by Peter Shalulile, Kermit Erasmus and Gaston Sirino has been firing on all cylinders in 2021 and the Uruguayan target man will be looking to join in on the act and make his mark as soon as possible.
“I hope I can contribute my part, I know that it will take me a while to get back to my best level but I will continue working daily to be better so I can be able to help the team achieve the objectives of the season”, concluded Affonso.