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'The target is to win the Champions League again‚' says Sundowns attacker Sibusiso Vilakazi

Lucas Digne of Barcelona is challenged by Sibusiso Vilakazi of Mamelodi Sundowns during Nelson Mandela Centenary Cup Friendly matchat FNB Stadium, Johannesburg on May 16 2018.
Lucas Digne of Barcelona is challenged by Sibusiso Vilakazi of Mamelodi Sundowns during Nelson Mandela Centenary Cup Friendly matchat FNB Stadium, Johannesburg on May 16 2018.
Image: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

AS Togo-Port’s bottom positioning in Group C of the 2018 Caf Champions League makes Mamelodi Sundowns’ back-to-back matches against the West Africans a must-win matter‚ says Brazilians attacker Sibusiso Vilakazi.

Sundowns are not quite at desperation stages yet‚ despite starting with two draws – 1-1 at home against Morocco’s Wydad Casablanca and 2-2 in Guinea against Horoya.

Six points against Association Sportive Togo-Port‚ in Lome on Tuesday night‚ then back at Lucas Moripe Stadium in Atteridgeville next Friday (July 27)‚ would see Downs right back in the driving seat for at least second place‚ and qualification for the quarterfinals.

But maximum points from one of the games‚ and perhaps a point from the other‚ would seem the minimum requirement for 2016 champions Sundowns to keep their ambition to regain their title on track.

“The most important thing‚ since we are playing the side who are lowest‚ is to keep them there‚” Vilakazi said.

“We haven’t had the greatest start‚ as we would have wanted to. But at least we’ve been able to get points out of the games we’ve played.

“So we’ve had a start. And it’s up to us to go away and try to get a win.

“Because of the disappointing start we must at least try to get a win playing away [against AS]. That’s the reality – that we have to go in there and try to get a win.

“The target is to win the Champions League again. And with the team we have I believe we are capable of going all the way.

“In the group stage we’re playing against the top teams. They have accumulated so many stars [above their badges‚ for winning the Champions league]. So we still have to catch up.”

Vilakazi said any hangover from Sundowns recapturing their Absa Premiership title from 2016-17 champions Bidvest Wits‚ the forward’s previous team‚ in May has long subsided.

“It’s gone – it’s done. We look ahead now to the new season‚” he said.

“We had our celebrating moments and those are gone.”

Sundowns will be without Gaston Sirino in Lome‚ as the Uruguayan forward is suspended.

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