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Rulani aims for early goal to pave way to CAF final

First 10 minutes crucial to settle nerves against Wydad

Neville Khoza Journalist
Sphelele Mkhulise is likely to replace the suspended Neo Maema in the CAF second leg clash against Wydad Casablanca at Loftus on Saturday.
Sphelele Mkhulise is likely to replace the suspended Neo Maema in the CAF second leg clash against Wydad Casablanca at Loftus on Saturday.
Image: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

The performance Mamelodi Sundowns has displayed in the CAF Champions League this season should be enough motivation for them to go all the way and win the title.

This is the view of coach Rulani Mokwena as his side prepares to host Wydad Casablanca in the semifinal second leg at Loftus Versfeld Stadium tomorrow (3pm).

Sundowns have been clinical and impressive as they went to Algeria and got a result against CR Belouizdad in the quarterfinal where they won 4 -1.

They also went to Morocco and managed to get a draw against Wydad. They now head into the second leg tomorrow at home against holders as favourites to progress to the final and reclaim the trophy won in 2016.

“I dont think at this point of the season we need extra motivation,” Mokwena told the media during the club press conference yesterday.

“Who we are and the work that weve done, should be necessary. But of course, if we were to be short of motivation [the late], uncle Alex [Shakaone] should be the fuel and the driving force behind that because he was what he was.”

After the first leg finished goalless in Casablanca, Mokwena is confident that his side will find the back of the net early, even if Wydad opt to sit back.

“Im expecting us to score an early goal, probably how we went about playing in the last few games for sure. I think we have a goal in us in the first 10 minutes,” he said.

“Do I see it coming very early? Im not so sure, but the message I will definitely have is patience because we trust ourselves to be able to unlock and we were able to score a goal and were just unfortunate of course, in that situation with an offside for Peter Shaluliles goal.

“And the game changed because we were one man down and the profile of the team had to change and adapt to the different pitches and the players responded well."

With Neo Maema to miss the second leg after his red card, Mokwena said he was not sure who would replace him. Gaston Sirino or Sphelele Mkhulise are players likely to replace him.

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