Sundowns coach Pitso admits big victory was a surprise
Sundowns have one foot in semis after thrashing Al Ahly
After the 5-0 demolition of Al Ahly in the first leg of the Caf Champions League quarterfinal on Saturday‚ Mamelodi Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane admitted he did not expect to win by that margin.
The Brazilians overcame early jitters to hand the African club of the century one of their heaviest defeats in the competition and put themselves in a good position to get to the semifinals for the second time in five years.
“If any one of us tells you they expected this result they will not be telling the truth‚” he said, voicing his respect for Al Ahly and their well-travelled Uruguayan coach Martín Lasarte.
“It is important for me as a coach to have humility and respect for the opponent.
“It is very rare for Sundowns to score so many goals in the Champions League. We are a small team only established in 1974 and we all know when Al Ahly was established and you can see the number of stars they have on their badge. When you have a win like this‚ it is history for our club and it will go to our archives.
“One day our children will know Sundowns beat Al Ahly 5-0 here and it may never happen again in this lifetime. I think they disrespect us because they are a big club and this was a surprise to them.”
Sundowns players‚ technical staff and president Patrice Motsepe celebrated wildly with their fans at the final whistle and Mosimane said it was enjoyable to savour a rare feat.
“I will make sure that I keep humility in the team, but we allowed a little bit of celebrations and excitement. We are babies in this space.
“We played very well‚ we scored the goals‚ we controlled the game and we played according to the plan. I was a bit worried whether we would have the legs for a 3pm kickoff after a big game against Orlando Pirates on Monday that was hectic for us in terms of the demands on the body.
“But you can’t play for Sundowns if you don’t look after yourself off the field because the schedule is heavy.
"Sometimes when we win like this‚ as coaches we sound like we are good, but to be honest we did our homework and everything came out the way we expected. There is no luck‚ we understand how they play and who are the people in their team.”