Mamelodi Sundowns secured a staggering 5-2 win over Al-Ahly on Saturday afternoon in the second leg of the CAF Champions League contest to advance to the knockout stages.
The visitors were handed an early goal as Marcelo Allende opened the scoring two minutes into the encounter. The Egyptian giants found an equalizer early on but Downs skipper Themba Zwane extended the lead once more and Teboho Mokoena sealed the first half proceedings to make it 3-1 going into the break. Sundowns target man Peter Shalulile scored a brace in the clash after the Red Devils’ second goal that looked to threaten Masandawana’s chances at triumph.
“These types of victories are not moments where you have to lose and you still have to stay very, very focused, they are very dangerous. There’s two more games in the group stages and a very long way to go in the Champions League.” Said The Brazilians Head Coach Rulani after the match.
“Sundowns has done it before, we haven’t done anything miraculous and anything out of the ordinary. The quality of the football players makes it possible. When you’ve got good football players any result is possible.”
Coach Rulani took a moment to applaud the supporters of the club for showing up to the stadium and rallying behind the team in one of their biggest rivalries, he said: “A big congratulations to the supporters because today they showed what is needed from them in the Champions League, they need to be the 12th, 13th man.”
“They need to sing, they need to bring the drum and make the atmosphere hostile and make it uncomfortable for the opposition and that’s what they did and I think that’s what helped us. They [Al-Ahly] are a very good side. Let’s not forget, this is Al Ahly we’re talking about, a team that finished third last season in the club World Cup, this season they just narrowly lost to Real Madrid in the last minutes.”
Bafana Ba Style have another testing game two days after their massive win in the CAF Champions League as they set up to welcome KwaZulu-Natal based Royal AM on Tuesday night. The Brazilians Head Coach showed confidence in his players to conquer in the Champions League as well as successfully defend their domestic titles that await. Coach Rulani also emphasized on the magnitude of this victory and what it means to the players.
“Don’t forget that today we beat a very, very good side. Give this group a fair chance, most of them really, really are playing their first real Champions League, so give them a fair chance to compete and to fight for it. It’s not easy, we are in the last three competitions until the end of the season [and] we’ve got a lot of traveling in between. Now we have to face a very motivated Royal AM side with a new coach in John Maduka.”
“After that [game on Tuesday] immediately the next day we’ve got to travel. We are off to another hostile environment with heat. We have to put 90 minutes into the legs and that’s not going to be easy because now the expectations have been raised”