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Mokwena – Why Pyramids Clash Is A Must-Win

Mamelodi Sundowns head coach Rulani Mokwena admits the CAF Champions League clash against Pyramids is a must-win based on how their group is poised.

Sundowns lead Group A, with TP Mazembe, Nouadibhou and Pyramids all level on four points after three games played.

After the goalless draw at Loftus Versfled, Sundowns face the Egyptian Premier League leaders knowing, they have to travel to Mauritania after and end the group against Mazembe in Tshwane in March.

“It’s very important to get a result but with three games to go in this group, we are sure we have enough within us to make sure we get a result,” Mokwena added.

“We have two away matches, so first this one in Cairo against Pyramids, then we have [to travel] to Mauritania which will be very difficult, it’s an artificial pitch and difficult weather conditions – and then we finish off, hopefully by then, we know what we need to do against Mazembe to make sure not only that we qualify from the group by finish first.

“But yeah, let’s take it one game at a time because we have some very difficult games before the end of the year we have to go one game at a time and give it everything we have.”

With Pyramids having lost points in their domestic league game before the Sundowns visit at 30 June Stadium tomorrow, the club’s hierarchy was said to have imposed fines on the squad which will undoubtedly leave them wounded and ready to bounce back.

“Pyramids look like a team, based on analysis, I got a glimpse of their midweek game on Thursday when they played a 2-2 draw, it’s a game they should have won, there were four players who didn’t play against us that started that game,” Mokwena noted.

“Al Said the captain had a good game, Fathi started and had a good game, Mayele was up front, and Gabr was playing to maybe prepare him to replace Osama. It’s still a very strong team, El Karti [is] aggressive, and Mohanad Lasheen is aggressive in midfield.

“They play with a lot of intensity, Fagrie Lakay will always be busy and look for a place behind [the defence], they have very good full-backs in Hamdy and Chibi, so a good team with a lot of very good players, they have Ramadan Sobhi who could also play.

“But a good team, we’ve done a lot of work to analyse them against TP Mazembe at home which was completely different from the performance they had against us [in Tshwane] so it’s a team with different personalities for home and away fixtures. 

“But we’re ready, we’ve done our homework and we’re excited to make sure we win the match.”

The match will kick off in New Cairo on Tuesday afternoon at 18h00.

Lorenz Kohler
Lorenz Kohler
Lorenz Köhler is an award-winning South African football journalist. Having cut his teeth in the industry working at Kick-Off Magazine, he is now iDiski Times' senior digital content writer. He specialises in breaking top African football stories and transfers with a major focus on the 'big-three' Mamelodi Sundowns, Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates and CAF inter-club and international competitions. In 2021 he was listed amongst the top-five journalists under 30 in Print Media for the AIPS Awards.