Enyimba and Mamelodi Sundowns are set for what promises to be a titanic 2016 CAF Champions League tussle in Atteridgeville this evening.
The Brazilians will feel aggrieved having been stripped of the victory they achieved in Algeria earlier this month.
Goals from Tiyani Mabunda and Khama Billiat steered the Absa Premiership champions to a memorable 2-0 win. But, Pitso Mosimane’s troops were denied all three points after CAF disqualified ES Setif from this year’s tournament.
The former two-time CAF Champions League champions were booted out of the competition following their fans’ unruly behaviour during the loss to the Brazilians.
But, despite having zero points on the board and having to start from scratch, Sundowns know victory in both their Group B home games will more likely than not secure their passage to the knockout stages.
Billiat, who scored a wonder goal in Setif, predicts another tough battle against Enyimba.
“I think it is a tough game…playing at home, there is a lot of pressure…we need a result and we have to bring our A game,” said Billiat.
“We need to stay focused, make sure we do the job on the day.
“There is always pressure, it is good to play with pressure…it gives you something to play for. You don’t have time to relax, you want results.”
Teammate Keagan Dolly explained that the club are disappointed at being back on zero points, but is confident they will win on home soil.
“We are a bit disappointed that they deducted our points…we fought really hard in Algeria, we played well, we were defensively disciplined, we created chances and we scored the two goals,” Dolly added.
“Our next focus is the game against Enyimba. We are playing at home, in front of our supporters…we have to stick to what we are good at and just go for all three points.”
Peoples’ Elephant striker Onyekachi Peter has highlighted the importance of the clash following their 1-0 defeat to Zamalek in Port Harcout on matchday one.
“The clash at Mamelodi Sundowns is a must win for us to have a chance of qualifying from the group,” said Peter.
“Although Mamelodi Sundowns’ victory at ES Setif has been cancelled leaving both sides square without a point but we know we have played more matches than the South African side so the only hope of further claim on the tickets is outright victory.
“We will not disappoint Nigerians but claim a win to convince them of our readiness to reclaim the African title we won back to back in 2003 and 2004.”
Sundowns contemplate atlernative venue for Enyimba match
Mamelodi Sundowns contemplated moving their 2016 CAF Champions League clash against Enyimba away from the Lucas Moripe Stadium in Atteridgeville.
It was gathered that the Brazilians are considering playing the clash at either Loftus or Orlando Stadium, before deciding against the move to play the clash at an alternative venue.
Atteridgeville was last week a scene of violent protest action, with residents reportedly unhappy following the ANC’s announcement of Thoko Didiza as mayoral candidate,
But, with the situation now under control, Sundowns have decided to go ahead with the fixture at the Lucas Moripe Stadium.
Pitso Mosimane’s troops need nothing but all three points against the Nigerian giants after their win against ES Setif was chalked off. The Algerian’s were disqualified from the competition for crowd trouble.
Sundowns were leading 2-0 in Setif after 90 minutes when the referee was forced to stop the game.
Moreover, Enyimba lost their opening Group B clash 1-0 at home to Zamalek.