‘It doesn’t bother me,’ says Mobbie on criticism from his Bafana doubters

Mahlatse Mphahlele Sports reporter
Sekhukhune United defender Nyiko Mobbie during their training session at Johannesburg Stadium.
Sekhukhune United defender Nyiko Mobbie during their training session at Johannesburg Stadium.
Image: Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix

The criticism and ridicule have often been brutal, but the soft-spoken Bafana Bafana and Sekhukhune United defender Nyiko Mobbie is taking it in his stride. 

Since Hugo Broos took over the Bafana coaching reins in 2021, Mobbie has been an almost ever-present feature at right-back for the national team, but some football supporters argue he doesn’t deserve to be there. 

When people questioned Mobbie’s frequent selection for the national team, Broos stuck to his guns by repeatedly maintaining the defender has done nothing to warrant being dropped. 

Last year, Broos said the 28-year-old has never disappointed him. 

“Nyiko Mobbie has never disappointed me. Never, except against France [a 5-0 friendly defeat for Bafana in March last year] and this was not only his fault,” Broos said last year. 

Asked to comment about his doubters, Mobbie said he focuses on improving his game and critics don’t bother him. 

“When you play football, it is normal for people to talk about you but it doesn’t worry me,” he said. 

“I always focus on trying to improve my game [and not what people say], but sometimes they are right in what they say and sometimes they are not right. 

“The most important thing is to work on improving myself and I have to accept people have their preferences. They will prefer the other player but it doesn’t bother me.  

“I just focus on my job here at Sekhukhune United and doing well whenever I am called up to the national team. It is not about the belief in me so much from the coach, what I can say is that everyone who goes to Bafana must go there and give their best.  

“It is not about me — everyone has to try to give their best.” 

On seventh-placed Sekukhune's season, Mobbie admitted they have blown hot and cold but are targeting a top five finish. 

“It has been good for us, we are trying to achieve our goal of finishing as high as possible. We have five games to play and our target is to try to win those games.  

“I am happy with the performances I have given for the team. Our realistic position is in the top five at the end of the season.

“We were worried as players and we try to correct our mistakes but we have to work on improving in every game. As players we have to work more on getting consistency.” 

Sekhukhune United host Kaizer Chiefs at Peter Mokaba Stadium on Sunday (3pm).

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