Tashreeq Matthews looking to benefit from Mamelodi Sundowns pre-season

Tashreeq Matthews looking to benefit from Mamelodi Sundowns pre-season

Mamelodi Sundowns attacker Tashreeq Matthews hopes the club’s upcoming training camps will push him to be at his best next season.

The 23-year-old was one of four new January signings and admitted arriving at Chloorkop at the halfway mark was always going to be a challenge.

“It wasn’t the easier period for me because there’s a lot of quality [players] around in the team – everyone has to work hard. But if you are willing to work hard then the guys are ready to help you find your way into the team.,” Matthews, who joined from Swedish outfit IK Sirius for a fee of around R40-million, told SABC Sport.

Matthews added that he had to also rely on one-on-one conversations with coach Rulani Mokwena to speed up his induction.

“Of course, I had to spend time with the coach. If you don’t know certain things you have to go to the coach and tell him so he can explain to you in more detail what he wants in the system,” the player explained.

Shortly after making a handful of appearances and chipping in with goals, Mokwena revealed he was still trying to figure out Matthews’ best position.

The player is still wrapping his head around that too having joined Sundowns on the back of scoring 11 goals and getting 10 assists for Sirius in 33 matches.

“To be honest I am not sure yet of my best position. Whenever I play I try to do my best in whichever position that I play in. I believe pre-season will make a big difference for me. I will be able to start fresh,” Matthews said.

“Well, not from the start, but it will be a new season with everyone else and there might be more possibilities, different positions and you never know the style we will get to play because football always changes. Maybe there will be more changes, but at least I get to be with the team from the beginning. To be honest, it is very difficult jumping into the team, especially a big team, in the middle of the season.”

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Despite all of that, Matthews was still able to score four goals and have one assist in the 17 games he featured in for Sundowns – mostly coming from the bench.

To make his arrival at a new club even sweeter, he now has a league title medal after The Brazilians were crowned champions for the seventh time in a row.

“It’s an amazing feeling – my first league medal and I am very excited to have it and I am just enjoying being around here. This is the best club in the country and it [trophies] is expected, but I am also just so excited to lift my first one,” said Matthews.