Absa Premiership

Jomo Cosmos' relegation threat

Jomo Sono (Getty Images)
Jomo Sono (Getty Images)

An icon of South African soccer during his playing career and the founder, owner and coach of Jomo Cosmos in a football career stretching more than 50 years, Jomo Sono, nicknamed "The Black Prince", is currently threatened with abdication from all PSL League competitions.

The stark and ignominious prospect intensified over the past weekend when Cosmos were beaten by Mbombela United, fellow relegation candidates from the PSL's subsidiary GladAfrica Championship, which could result in banishment to mainly amateur SAFA competitions in order to continue in soccer - if at all!

Cosmos presently occupy second bottom place in the GladAfrica log and are thereby positioned in the two spots designated for relegation.

Sono, however, always the optimist, not only dismisses the possibility of GladAfrica relegation, but vows to return the PSL's Absa Premiership, where his club achieved numerous notable honours after purchasing Highlands Park's NPSL franchise in 1982, before a series of snakes-and-ladders relegations and promotions culminated in the present demotion plight three seasons go.

"I would not continue to be involved in soccer if I did not believe in the club," says the Cosmos supremo about achieving a revival "after the grim virus plight affecting the game worldwide abates."

Sono's confidence, nonetheless, is not fraught without its difficulties, notably among them that the club has never been able to secure a suitable, permanent  home ground for games - and, despite "The Black Prince's" widespread popularity during his playing career with Orlando Pirates, he has not been able to transfer similar emotions among fans on a large extent for his club.

Also, some have suggested Cosmos would benefit from Sono divorcing his omnipotent ownership and coaching commitments by appointing someone else to handle the on-the-field coaching department.

This, however, is something "The Black Prince" has dismissed with a degree of royal authority and contempt in the past - and he is unlikely to change his standpoint in the future.

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