Ill-discipline, again, stands in the way of Rantie’s football career as Downs give him the boot

Tokelo Rantie played his last match during the Shell Helix Ultra Cup in October 2019. Picture: Lefty Shivambu/Gallo Images
Tokelo Rantie played his last match during the Shell Helix Ultra Cup in October 2019. Picture: Lefty Shivambu/Gallo Images

Mamelodi Sundowns have terminated the contract of one-time Bafana Bafana striker Tokelo Rantie with immediate effect, the club confirmed on Sunday.

According to Sundowns, they let go of the 29-year-old marksman on grounds of ill-discipline. This comes a year after Cape Town City also released the striker from his contract before he kicked a ball for them.

Rantie joined Sundowns as a free agent in September but made no official starts for the Pretoria based club over the course of the season, except for an odd appearance in the Shell Helix Cup against Kaizer Chiefs in October.

The Brazilians confirmed that Rantie has been missing from training for the past month without permission and the club decided to terminate his contract following an internal disciplinary procedure.

In a statement released over the weekend the club’s legal executive Yogesh Singh confirmed that Rantie would no longer play a part at the club.

“The standard at Sundowns is high for a professional footballer and there is a zero-tolerance for ill-discipline. Of course, players are human and we will first go through counselling to correct a player’s behaviour but there is a line and when that is crossed we do not compromise the dressing-room for any individual player,” said Singh.

After Sundowns 3-0 win over AmaZulu in Durban on Saturday evening, coach Pitso Mosimane told SuperSport in a post-match interview that it was a “sad story”.

“Tokelo, shame man it’s a little bit of a sad story, he’s missing the party, he’s missing this kind of a game, open like this, he should be running and scoring to get his confidence,” Mosimane said.

Rantie was released from Cape Town City in December 2018 and in January last year former coach Benni McCarthy also said lifestyle concerns and personal problems stood in the way of the former Bournemouth player during his short stint with the Citizens.

Tokelo Rantie in happier times during the 2015 Nelson Mandela Challenge match between South Africa and Senegal. Picture: Lefty Shivambu/Gallo Images

“Unfortunately for us we couldn’t be able to overturn and change what was going on behind the closed doors, in TK’s lifestyle, his life, his personal life,” McCarthy said at the time.

“Football was not enough. It needed much more than football to save him. It’s so sad to see such a talented player robbed of the opportunity to excel and play one of the best sports.”

Rantie is not the first player to fall foul of the disciplinary procedures at Sundowns this season with both Muzi Mashaba and Siyabonga Zulu also kicked out of Chloorkop.

- Additional reporting Sport24

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