Enyimba, Sundowns ready to rumble in Pretoria tomorrow
The ‘Peoples Elephant’ are already settled down in Pretoria. The team arrived in Johannesburg yesterday morning and immediately drove to Pretoria to begin their final preparation for tomorrow’s CAF Champions League cracker with Mamelodi Sundowns. And the signal from the camp after their first training session at the designated match stadium is that Enyimba is here to win the game.
Win they must because the Aba boys lost to Zamalek of Egypt in their first game of the group stage despite dominating all spheres of the match in Port Harcourt.
The officials and players blamed the waterlogged pitch of the Adokie Aimiesiamaka Stadium for their home defeat, but they won’t have such complaints tomorrow in Atteridgeville because the stadium is one that every player dreams of.
Enyimba and Sundowns are meeting on a semi-zero level behind leaders, Zamalek, hence each of them want to win tomorrow’s game at the Lucas Masterpiece Moripe Stadium in Pretoria.
Sundowns beat Entente Setif of Algeria 2-0 in Algiers but that result was cancelled when CAF threw out the Algerian team from the competition due to disciplinary issues. That lifeline from CAF gave Enyimba the belief they could still make it to the semifinals if they got a good result in tomorrow’s game.
Looking forward to the renaissance, Enyimba striker, Peter Onyekachi, told a local website that they are in South Africa to win.
“The clash at Mamelodi Sundowns is a must win for us to enhance our chance of qualifying from the group after a matchday 1 fixture clash loss to Zamalek of Egypt.
“Although Mamelodi Sundowns’ victory at ES Setif has been cancelled leaving both sides square without a point, 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.
“It will not be easy at Mamelodi Sundowns, who are already bruised with the victory cancellation and will want to prove to their teeming supporters that the win at ES Setif was not a fluke but well deserved.
“However, we have been on this path in the past and know what it takes to survive such a high tempo game.
“We have worked on the mistakes that hampered our game against Zamalek to ensure we claim a favourable result at Sundowns.
“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,” Onyekachi said.
While Onyekachi is optimistic of a good outing tomorrow, Mamelodi Sundowns’ henchmen, Khama Billiat, Keagan Dolly and Wayne Arendse believe nothing will stand between them and victory.
Billiat, who is the South African league’s player of the season, is of the opinion that Sundowns have no business with either a draw or defeat tomorrow.
“We are well motivated, and we are all buzzing with confidence ahead of our encounter with Enyimba,” he said.
“I am looking forward to showcasing to Africa and the world that we are a world-class team,” midfielder Dolly told kickoff.
“We are expecting a physical game and we are up for the challenge come Wednesday,” added defender, Arendse.
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