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‘Royal AM didn’t make me, I made them’: Mnisi hits back at claims he is ‘sinking the club’

Royal AM CEO Sinky Mnisi addresses a press conference about matters he says have been in the media about him at Premier Hotel OR Tambo on August 3.
Royal AM CEO Sinky Mnisi addresses a press conference about matters he says have been in the media about him at Premier Hotel OR Tambo on August 3.
Image: Sydney Seshibedi/Gallo Images

Royal AM CEO Sinky Mnisi says the KwaZulu-Natal-based club didn’t make him, he made them what they are today.

Mnisi made the remark during his press conference called to address a number of allegations in Johannesburg on Wednesday.

Royal enjoyed huge success in their maiden season in the DStv Premiership in 2022-23 after buying the franchise of Bloemfontein Celtic, finishing third and qualifying for the Caf Confederation Cup.

Mnisi’s presser, at a hotel near OR Tambo International Airport, was one for the books as nobody was safe from attack — from his boss Shauwn “MaMkhize” Mkhize to some members of the media and their publications, rival clubs and even football fans such as high-profile AM supporter Joy “Mama Joy” Chauke.

A number of media reports over the past month have suggested the relationship between Royal owner Mkhize and the experienced football administrator has broken down due to a lack of trust.

Reports further suggested that Mnisi has been suspended from his position, which he has denied. Mkhize has refused to confirm his suspension.

“I’ve had people saying that I’ve been trying to sink the team. But looking into the success of Royal AM, ladies and gentlemen, I’m very proud of myself,” Mnisi said before claiming he was responsible for their success.

“My record in football is intact. Any team that I’ve joined is performing well and nobody can take that away from me.

“When I joined Royal AM it was Royal AM — and let me put this record straight: Royal AM didn’t make Sinky Mnisi. No, it’s actually the opposite.

“I’ve contributed to the success of Royal AM to make Royal AM what they are. When I was there [it the club was] in the National First Division [NFD] we performed.

“I was the first person to make the statement that we were going to be promoted and take number one in the NFD.

“And let me put the record straight today: we did take number one except for the boardroom decision. We won that league and I’m still sticking to that. I’m still waiting for somebody who can challenge me on that.

“Royal AM won the league except for the boardroom decision. It doesn’t mean if an arbitrator has decided, and because the decision is final, it’s right.

“In terms of the laws of the game, I’m telling you that Royal AM won the league.”

An arbitration decision at the end of the 2020-21 season awarded points to Sekhukhune United, making them NFD champions for automatic promotion to the Premiership.

Royal failed through numerous court attempts to reverse the decision and then bought the Premiership status of Celtic.

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