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FOR any striker to get the better of Spanish goalkeeper Iker Casillas, he has to be pretty good. For a South African striker to do so - not once but twice - is a remarkable feat.
No wonder Mamelodi Sundowns' Katlego Mphela took his feat in the Confederations Cup as a turning point.
Q: So how does it feel scoring against the best goalkeeper in the world?
A: It was a pretty amazing feeling. More than anything, the goals inspired all my efforts from then on and gave me a huge confidence boost.
Q: Who is Katlego Mphela?
A: I was born in Oukasie, Britz, on November 29 1984. I was raised by my grandmother Frieda, who passed away last year. I am Maggie and Naledi Monyeki's son.
Q: Did you always know you would play football for a living?
A: No. I was very good with numbers and wanted to be a chartered accountant. The plan was to study financial management and take it from there.
Q: What were you like at school?
A: Very quiet - I still am. Until I am comfortable with someone I don't say much.
Q: Who were your sporting heroes growing up?
A: Brazilian Ronaldo, but I also liked Thierry Henry. I've been told our styles are similar. Ronaldinho and Lionel Messi are also pretty good. In South Africa I liked Pollen Ndlanya and Robson Muchichwa, while he was still at Kaizer Chiefs. My friends used to call me Muchichwa.
Q: Who do you regard as the greatest athlete ever?
A: It's a tie between former basketball great Michael Jordan and (sprinter) Michael Johnson.
Q: How many languages do you speak?
A: English, Setswana, isiZulu, French. I learnt to speak French fluently while playing for Strasbourg between 2004 and 2007.
Q. What can you tell us about the French?
A. They are positive and hard-working people, but can be arrogant.
Q: Which car do you drive?
A: A BMW 125i.
Q: What advice do you have for kids who would like to emulate you?
A: I tell them that humility, focus and hard work are the only way.
Q. Your views on polygamy?
A. (laughing) I don't have a problem with it. It's not for me, but if your culture says you can then be my guest.
Q: What do you know about global warming?
A: Not much I'm afraid.
Q: Who is your favourite actor?
A: Definitely Denzel Washington.
Q. Beyoncé or Halle Berry?
A. That is no choice! Can I go for both?
Q: Who is your favourite musician?
Q: If you could bring one person back from the dead, who would it be?
A: My grandmother who passed away last year, she brought me up. I used to go back home as often as possible. But I'm glad she lived to see my goals.
It gave me pleasure to build her a house and I wish she was still alive today.
Q. Your future dreams?
A. To play overseas - preferably in England or Spain, but I'm keeping an open mind. I wouldn't mind going back to France.
Q. Who is your favourite local player?
A. My teammate Mabhuti Khenyeza. He just makes things easy for you when you play with him. Nkosinathi Nhleko is another one. He was in the same boat like me - heavily criticised but he went on to prove his detractors wrong.