This post contains affiliate links. “As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.”
The Tshwane giants advanced by leaps and bounds into the group stage of the continent’s elite club competition with a crucial away win.
Mamelodi Sundowns co-manager Rhulani Mokwena refuses to consider his 2-0 lead as an advantage over the Jwaneng Galaxy ahead of the first round of the Caf Champions League, Tuesday’s second leg at Loftus Versfeld.
The away win three days before Christmas Day left Downs in a commanding position ahead of the home game, in which they can afford a one-goal loss and still advance to the group stage of the competition.
But Mokwena is wary of complacency infiltrating her camp, which could see her visitors from Botswana causing great discomfort.
“We entered the Caf game with great confidence. Of course, three important points against a direct opponent. [Orlando Pirates] for the championship in the national competition, ”Mokwena told the Sundowns media team.
“But that chapter is closed and we have to try to mentally make sure that we are in the right space as we try to prepare for it. Two to zero is always a dangerous marker, especially if it is in the middle.
“We take it [first leg] Like 45 minutes with the next 90 minutes being the next 45 minutes to see us in the group stage.
“We have to make sure we approach the game mentally with the right character and personality of the team. That has been our focus, of course. But again you have to make sure you are technically and tactically ready for the game.
“We have to protect ourselves from complacency. We are not in a favorable situation. Of course, when you are in a favorable situation, you will find much more comfort and comfort breeds complacency.
“You don’t have to be in that space where you are complacent and approach the game negligently.”
Mokwena acknowledged that the Sundowns have established themselves as one of the strongest teams in Africa and expectations weigh heavily on their shoulders.
“We have to be very responsible and diligent because we carry the responsibility of one of the biggest clubs on the African continent with great expectations and a vision that goes beyond any other club,” said Mokwena.
“So for us, to be very responsible and carry that expectation with diligence and a lot of responsibility knowing that we have to serve not only the supporters but also the board and the president and represent Mamelodi Sundowns very well. The Jwaneng are very difficult, they are built from behind. “
Sundowns enters Tuesday’s game with great confidence after beating the Orlando Pirates 1-0 in a Premier Soccer League game last Saturday.