Mamelodi Sundowns and former Zambian international goalkeeper, Kennedy Mweene’s tale has come to a close with the footballer announcing his retirement at the age of 38. Mweene was not just a goalkeeper, he was a legend, a beacon of inspiration for aspiring footballers across the African continent. His journey with Sundowns was one of triumph, perseverance, and unwavering passion.
Throughout his tenure, the iconic goalkeeper had collected an astonishing array of trophies, including eight Premier Soccer League (PSL) titles, two Nedbank Cups, two Telkom Knockout titles, a coveted CAF Champions League crown, and the glorious CAF Super Cup. These achievements were not mere numbers on a page; they were symbols of his dedication, hard work, and relentless pursuit of excellence.
“My ten years at Sundowns as a football player has been emotional. I’ve shared the dressing room with a lot of good players at Sundowns and now it’s time to celebrate. I’ve achieved all these things because of the people around me.” Said Mweene.
“Football has taken me to places which I never dreamt that one day I’d be able to share the same pitch with some of the great players that Africa has ever offered. There’s league trophies we have won. I have won eight PSL titles, two Nedbank Cups, two Telkom, a Champions League as well as the Super Cup.”
Though the decorated and acrobatic keeper marked the end of a beautiful era in his career, his impact and achievements would continue to inspire generations of footballers who dared to dream. For ten glorious years, the Zambian international goalie stood tall as the last line of defense for Bafana ba Style, but now, the time has come for him to hang up his boots and bid farewell to the game he loved.
Kapalaya, known for his agility, bravery, and incredible reflexes, has been a pillar of strength for The Brazilians. Reflecting back on their teammates’ character, Denis Onyango and Reyaad Pieterse spoke highly of Kennedy’s impact on the team as they had shared the dressing room and training ground with him for several years, describing him as a mentor and a true professional.
“He’s a fun individual, an honest guy, a good teammate to have and he’s been a good motivator for myself and the young ones coming in. Kennedy has made tremendous saves and has kept us in many competitions, to learn from someone like that is such an honor and privilege. He’s world class.” Said Pieterse.
“[We have] happy faces when we are training, but of course give a hundred percent when we are given a task. He’s the only goalkeeper in the PSL who has won all the titles in Africa, he’s been an inspiration to me since I joined Sundowns.” Expressed Onyango.
Another voice that joined to bid farewell to the Zambian shot stopper was Downs goalkeeper Coach, Wendell Robinson, he took a moment to reflect on the incredible journey of this remarkable goalkeeper: “He’s professional, hard working but most of all he is one of the most humble and kind human beings you’ll ever find.”
As Kennedy Mweene stepped away from the game that had defined him for so long, the footballing world celebrated his achievements and legacy. His time at Mamelodi Sundowns had been nothing short of extraordinary, leaving an indelible mark on the club’s history. With his graceful exits from the field, Kennedy ensured that his legacy would live on, inspiring generations of goalkeepers to come. The revered goalkeeper expressed his heartfelt gratitude for his time at the home of the Champions.
“I am hanging up my boots and gloves because I think I have played my part at both national level and club level. Thank you so much to everyone who has contributed to my life. Most of the coaches I’ve gone through have made me a better person, a better player as well, it was a successful career and I don’t think it could have happened anywhere else apart from Sundowns.”