Tebogo “Messi” Tlolane
Jomo Cosmos revelation, Tebogo Tlolane, aka Messi, says he is ‘stunned beyond words’ as he gets set to depart South Africa’s shores for a once in a lifetime opportunity – to attend trials at the famous Barcelona FC in Spain.
Tlolane, boasting 16 starts, six substitute appearances, one goal and three assists in the league this season, was recently spotted by Barcelona scouts and subsequently invited for a two-week assessment.
“This is indeed an overwhelming opportunity for me,” says Tlolane, who is nicknamed Messi due to his striking similarities with the world-renowned Lionel Messi. “I am so excited I cannot find the right words to describe my feelings.
“This is going to be my first trip outside South Africa, and I am going there with the mentality of a novice because I believe I still have a lot to learn in the game.
“It feels so awesome to be given such a rare opportunity to go learn from the best and rub shoulders with my idol Lionel Messi whom I consider to be greatest footballer of our generation,” added the 22-year-old dribbling wizard from Katlehong.
He gave credit to Jomo Cosmos boss, Jomo Sono for the chance to play in the NFD, without which this wouldn’t have been possible.
“I need to give thanks to my coach and mentor, the great Jomo Sono, who made it all possible by giving me the chance to showcase my abilities in the league. But even more importantly, I need to make him proud by making use of this rare opportunity,” Tlolane stressed further.
Tlolane is being accompanied on the trip to Spain by 17-year-old Cosmos Academy starlet, Bafana Tshawe, who is heading to the famous Barcelona Academy.