Speaking immediately after guiding his team back to the elite league, Sono described his team as ready to take on the challenge of the top league head on.
“We will compete. It is not nice to be labelled a yo-yo team and we would like to change that.”
And he has already made plans to ensure Cosmos hit the ground running when they return to the top league.
“We knew we would get promoted so we have already signed a few experienced players to beef up our squad. But we will still look for more,” he said after Cosmos’ 1-0 victory over Moroka Swallows at Dobsonville Stadium, a win that saw them top the three-team promotional play-offs on goal difference over Black Leopards.
Sono said he is likely to lose key striker Charlton Mashumba with three Premiership teams and some European outfits already having expressed keen interest in the 22-year-old Zimbabwean. Mashumba’s goals (17) were key to Ezenkosi finishing second in the NFD with the most number of strikes (52). He was also their top scorer in the play-offs with two goals.
Losing Mashumba will not be a train smash for Cosmos with Sono renowned for his incredible eye for talent and there’s every reason to foresee him finding an equally good replacement.
Beating Swallows twice in the play-offs (they hammered the Birds 4-1 in the first round clash) to ensure the Dube Birds went down was sweet revenge for Sono.
“They got us relegated the last time and now we got them relegated so we’re even. But I have very mixed feelings about it because Swallows supported me (Cosmos) when we were expelled from football in 1986. They staged a protest against the decision and I hope they come back immediately,” he remembered “It is painful to see old teams, especially black ones like Swallows and AmaZulu go down. They were founder members of the NSL and it would be good to see them come back.”
Sono also expressed sympathy for Leopards whom he narrowly beat to the promotion.
“These things happen. It could have been us or them (getting promoted) and I am sure Leopards will work hard next season to make it.”
Few will begrudge Cosmos their return to the elite league after they had a splendid season in the NFD where they finished second behind champions Golden Arrows. In previous years that feat would have earned them automatic promotion and Sono has actually called on the league to relook the play-offs system.
Not that he will experience it again, Sono’s hell-bent on seeing Cosmos return to their old days of being among the country’s top eight sides in the new season where he will “kick ass”. - The Star
Original source: I’ll kick ass in PSL - Jomo