'SuperSport can be on par with Downs, Bucs'
Posted: 24 November 2017 Time: 19:00
SuperSport United coach Eric Tinkler says winning the CAF Confederation Cup would seal "proper legend status" for the players, while placing the club on par with Mamelodi Sundowns and Orlando Pirates.
Matsatsantsa will be contesting the biggest match of the club's history when they take on Congolese giants TP Mazembe in the Confederation Cup final second leg at the ucas Moripe Stadium on Saturday evening (20h15).
Having lost 2-1 away in Lubumbashi last weekend, the hosts need just a solitary goal and a cleansheet to secure their maiden continental title, as they join the Buccaneers and The Brazilians to have won major CAF club championships.
Tinkler is aware of the task that lies ahead, having been at this very stage with the Buccaneers just two years ago, and stresses the importance of being crowned champions for himself, the players, the club and the country.
"This will give you proper legend status, in my opinion. It's like what Sundowns have achieved and what Pirates have achieved, so now SuperSport will find itself on that same pedastal," said Tinkler on Friday afternoon.
"Winning on the African continent is no easy task, it's a mammoth task. When you do it, you'll be extremely proud of what you've achieved.
"I think for the players and myself, it would be a fantastic achievement, likewise for the country, it's good for everybody."
SuperSport captain Dean Furman is also looking to leave a similar legacy at the club to that of the Class of '96 that won South Africa's maiden Africa Cup of Nations title, and hopes to share stories of the momentus occassion for many years to come.
"It's one of those things that in 20 years we might still be speaking about, like the [Bafana Bafana] team of 1996 that won the AFCON," added Furman.
"You can ask for the coach's [Tinkler] stories, you can ask coach Andre [Arendse] for his stories, they're still talking about it to this day.
"So for us as players now, it's probably something, if we go on and win it, we'll be talking about it in 20 years and that's the kind of legacy we want to leave as players."
The 29-year-old midfielder has emphasized the amount of work, sweat, blood and tears put into this campaign, and says missing out on the winners medals would make it all come to nothing.
"The effort and time that's gone into this tournament, it's not a tournament that you play over six weeks, it's one that's now going into its 11th [Ed note: ninth] month," he uttered.
"This is our 18th game, and we've put in an unbelievable shift, so to come this far and not go over the line would be crushing for us, so there's everything for us to go and win this tournament – for now and for the future."