Michaelson Ntokozo Gumede

By Ntokozo Gumede


Sundowns gunning for top spot as old rivals Al-Ahly looms

Sundowns shift their focus to Caf Champions League where they meet rivals Al-Ahly this coming weekend.

Over the past few seasons, Mamelodi Sundowns have always been coy about their intentions in the Caf Champions League, but this time around, head coach Rulani Mokwena has made it clear that he is gunning for the top spot in Group B.

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Sundowns are on the right path to achieving that feat after they beat Cotonsport 3-1 last Friday to amass a total tally of six points following their opening group win against Al-Hilal.

“The focus is to get as close as possible to 10 points so we can get ourselves as close as possible to the quarterfinals. We have set an objective to finish first in the group and we will do that by respecting everybody in the group. We will play the game the way it is supposed to be played,” said Mokwena.

Next up for Masandawana is a trip to foes Al-Ahly, who are nursing their wounds following a 1-0 loss to Hilal. The record holders will host Sundowns on Saturday.

Zungu remains patient

While the side has won the Champions League before, one player who is looking forward to winning it is Bongani Zungu. The 30-year-old left Downs a few months before then coach Pitso Mosimane led the side to the title in 2016.

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Zungu was given a 14-minute cameo in the win over Cotonsport, with the likes of Teboho Mokoena and Sphelele Mkhulise are preferred by Mokwena in the heart of midfield. However, he knew that was not going to walk into the starting line-up when he decided to return to the country.

“I made a decision to come back and play for one of the biggest teams in Africa. There is a lot of ambition to succeed and compete with the best on the continent. Since I have been back, there has been tremendous improvement in the club,” said Zungu.

“The players that we have now are of high quality and for me it is all about me working hard so I can get into the team. It does not matter who starts, I will just wait for my chance and if it does come I will grab it with both hands,” he added.

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