Clubs in African football do not come bigger than eight-time Champions League winners Ahly‚ 1-0 aggregate winners over Wits after their 0-0 second leg draw at Bidvest Stadium on Sunday.
Wits had their chances in the home leg‚ especially when Gabadinho Mhango struck the upright just before the break.
The Clever Boys gave an excellent account of themselves‚ their structure and quality‚ and also the standard of their facility and pitch at Bidvest Stadium‚ impressing Ahly coach Hossam El-Badry.
There appears a swing towards taking continental football seriously from the Clever Boys.
Mamelodi Sundowns’ victory in the Champions League last year and participation at the Club World Cup is apparently permeating into South Africa’s big clubs’ consciousness the advantages that can be gained from competing at a higher level.
Josephs said Wits can learn from the professionalism of the Cairo giants they encountered in the first round.
“It just showed that we lacked the experience‚" Josephs said.
"We lacked the knowhow to win games like this and you clearly saw that Al Ahly knew what to do.
“They were nice and compact and composed and there is a lot we can learn from them.
“A little bit of experience in front of goal.
"When we had those chances‚ those are the ones that we must bury.
“And that’s exactly what Ahly did in Egypt.
"They had their chance and they buried it.
"We had our chance and we never took it.
“So we have to move on‚ and we have to learn from this.
"It’s our first outing against the bigger boys‚ and I think we gave a good account of ourselves.
“But if we want to go any further we have to learn from this and take it into our league.
"Because you know what South African football is like – we play a team like Al Ahly‚ then we come back here and play a team like Baroka and then the mindset changes.
“We need to change that and take every game as an Al Ahly game.” - TMG Digital