Mamelodi Sundowns coach Rulani Mokwena has expressed how strenuous it was to prepare for the Caf Champions League encounter against Cotonsport during the international break.
Sundowns, however, still managed to beat the Cameroonian side 2-1 at the Loftus Stadium last Saturday.
” [It was] A difficult game against a good opponent. A team that even though they didn’t have much to play for they still put up a brave fight and worked really, really hard and [tried] their best to represent their people and their country. Congratulations to Mamelodi Sundowns Football Club for qualifying to the quarterfinals and congratulations to the players, the technical staff, and everybody associated with the club,” said Mokwena.
“It’s tough, especially when you have so many internationals because you don’t have a lot of time to work on preparations but that’s why we work so hard during the training sessions that are available. As you know, we only received the Bafana Bafana players on Thursday for training. Brian [Onyango] was only back on Thursday and they couldn’t do much because they arrived almost close to midnight. That’s Thursday gone and it’s matchday -1 on Friday, we couldn’t have most of them.”
The Brazilians made hefty changes to their usual like up, with only three players from their previous encounter starting the game.
Mokwena was full of praise for his players after taking another step towards their Champions League ambitions.
“It was a good performance, I thought. Really in most moments I was quite happy with a lot of the things we did on the pitch.
“[There was] one or two things that I was not happy about and unfortunately we didn’t keep a clean sheet, but there were a lot of things that I liked. Even the individual performances were very, very good especially because some of the players hadn’t played in a long time. But good, [I am] pleased with the result, pleased with the number of points from a very difficult group.”
“We have to use the squad that we have and we have a very good squad, with very good players who happen to be very good human beings. [It was] not easy but we are happy that we were able to play well today. I was happy with the performance today, it had some very good things and I am happy for the boys to pick up a win,” commented Mokwena.
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