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Mokwena Vows To Overturn Deficit Against Esperance

  • April 24, 2024
  • 2 min read
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Mokwena Vows To Overturn Deficit Against Esperance

Mamelodi Sundowns coach Rulani Mokwena is determined to see his team overturn the 1-0 deficit against ES Esperance in the CAF Champions League second leg semifinal on Friday.

Sundowns fell behind in the tie after Esperance secured a narrow victory in Rades last weekend. Mokwena displayed his intent by resting key players during Sundowns’ 2-1 win over Sekhukhune United in the DStv Premiership on Wednesday.

While the Esperance technical team and players, already in South Africa, might have analyzed that match, it featured a largely rotated Sundowns lineup. The team’s playing style remained consistent, but the personnel will be vastly different on Friday, with fringe players replaced by Sundowns’ core group.

Themba Zwane, Peter Shalulule, Marcello Allende, Ronwen Williams, and several other key players are set to start at Loftus Stadium. Mokwena emphasized the team’s commitment: “We will leave everything on the pitch to get the result and reach the final.”

Acknowledging Esperance’s quality, Mokwena stated, “I still don’t think the performance [in the first leg] was bad. They are a good side, well-coached, and do good things on the pitch. But Sundowns are just as good.”

He passionately addressed any misconceptions about his reaction to losses: “Sometimes people think I’m happy when the team loses. No, I suffer just as much as the supporters. I will do everything I can to overturn the result. We are 100% committed.”

Sundowns and Mokwena will be aiming to avoid a repeat of last season’s defeat to Wydad Casablanca at Loftus Stadium in the same stage of the competition.

Picture courtesy of Mamelodi Sundowns

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