Having played club football in Australia, Cyprus and Belarus, Rhoda Mulaudzi is one of the most experienced female footballers in South Africa.
Her consistency with Mamelodi Sundowns Ladies has seen her rise to the status of a mentor for some of the youngsters coming through the ranks.
Just recently, the 33-year-old assumed coaching duties of the female Under-13 set-up as the club continue its constant efforts to amplify the voice of women in the game. Rhoda also assists Andisiwe Mgcoyi in coaching the Under-15 female team.
Thus far, Mulaudzi has embraced the roles and responsibilities of being a coach in the dugout.
“Being a coach is not as easy as everyone thinks. There are so many aspects of the game that you have to pay close attention to as a gaffer. You need to understand the mindset of the players, as well as their mentality to buy into your philosophy. Being a coach also makes one understand the psychological aspects of the game because I am now able to understand the frustrations of a player when things are not going according to plan. Overall, by becoming a coach, I have gained a broader understanding of the game,” Rhoda stated.
Rhoda’s career with Mamelodi Sundowns Ladies has been magnificent, to say the least. Mulaudzi was part of the inaugural SAFA National Women’s League (known as the Hollywoodbets Super League for sponsorship reasons) where she bagged a Championship medal and became the league’s top goalscorer with 36 goals in 18 matches.
Last year, the versatile forward was a finalist for the ‘Sports Achiever of the Year’ at the Tshwane Women in Sports Awards. She also won the South Africa Journalist Awards (SAFJA)’s Women’s Player of the Year award for 2019-20.
Having been around the block for a while, Rhoda is happy with the progression of women’s football in South Africa.
“Having spent some time outside South Africa in the past few years, I am glad to say that women’s football in Africa is gradually getting the recognition it deserves. Last year we had the inaugural edition of the CAF Women’s Champions League and there are plans for the proposed FIFA Women’s Club World Cup. In South Africa, women’s football is in the right direction. We have our development structures in Sundowns and it is a good process,” Mulaudzi stated.
The veteran striker spoke on the vision for her team, “I love my team to play as a functional attacking unit who possesses a positive mindset. I try to instill in my players a winning mentality, something we enjoy at Mamelodi Sundowns. The onus is on me to help the team to develop their potential. My goal is to ensure that the team plays good football and to be dynamic in whatever positions they are playing.”
Last season, Rhoda Mulaudzi played as a winger and was part of the team that clinched a historic treble (winning the (Hollywoodbets Super League, COSAFA CAF Women’s Champions League qualifiers and the CAF Women’s Champions League in Egypt).
This season Rhoda Mulaudzi is back to her striking role and having changed her jersey number from number 36 to number 9, she has proven to be more lethal with four goals in the league already. Her experience as a winger has also improved her creative abilities to rack up the assists as well.
Kudos to Rhoda Mulaudzi!!