Al Ahly coach Pitso Mosimane has admitted there is a big gulf in class between his African champions and European champions Bayern Munich.
The South African was talking after his side, who had beaten local champions Al Duhail 1-0 to reach the last four, lost 2-0 to the Germans in the semi-finals of the Club World Cup in Qatar.
Despite the loss Mosimane is determined to claim third place on Thursday when they face Brazil’s Copa Libertadores winners Palmeiras, who lost their semi-final 1-0 to Mexico’s UANL Tigres.
“When we are the best team in the continent you always have to try and see how far are you from Europe, and I think you see the difference to see how far we are with Europe at the moment,” he said.
“A very difficult game for us. We played a very good team and you can understand why they are the number one in the world and the number one in Europe too. They stopped us having the ball.”
Immediately after the Bayern loss Mosimane’s attention turned to equalling Al Ahly’s best ever finish at the Club World Cup, third in 2006.
“We are looking forward to finishing in third place and winning a bronze medal,” he insisted to the Al Ahly website.
“To do that we have to learn from the Al Duhail and Bayern Munich matches. There are some negative aspects of the team’s performance against Al Duhail and Bayern Munich.
“We will look forward to dealing with thoe, and there are also positives that we must work on to improve the team.”
Al Ahly’s medical staff are working hard to makes sure that Tunisia defender Ali Maaloul is fit for the game after he was forced off the pitch on 28 minutes with an injury.