Themba Zwane not panicking over Mamelodi Sundowns' CAF Champions League group standing
Posted: 16 July 2018 Time: 17:00
Mamelodi Sundowns midfielder Themba Zwane is aware of the hefty expectations in their CAF Champions League campaign, and insists they are still in control of their own fate.
Sundowns have returned from their off-season break and are about to start their 2018/19 season with the resumption of the Champions League group stages.
With the FIFA World Cup having afforded them some much-needed and well-deserved rest, The Brazilians are ready to kick on and show their mettle as former continental champions.
With just two points from their two games thus far, Zwane admits they should have done better in their previous encounter away to Guinean side Horoya, but is adamant they can turn things around starting with a victory against AS Togo-Port in Lome on Tuesday.
“I feel like we should have done much better in our last game [against Horoya] – we should have won that game,” Zwane tells KickOff.com.
“But it’s football, it happens. Now we need to make sure we win the next game against AS Togo, and the remaining games in the group – I think we can win them.”
While Downs have made history by becoming the first South African side to qualify for the group stages on three consecutive occasions, this is no longer the sort of success they are able to celebrate.
Their maiden triumph in 2016 has led expectations to be significantly adjusted, with qualifying for the knockout stages becoming mandatory, and ‘Mshishi’ accepts this.
“The pressure is always there, but I’m happy that as players we are now used to that pressure because we know what we are capable of,” he defends.
“Also, at Sundowns we are always expected to win, so for us to now have to go out and win is already something engraved in our minds.
“It’s still in our own hands, we just need to make sure we win the remaining games so that we can qualify for the knockout stages, which is what is expected from the supporters and management.”
Kick-off at the Municipal Stadium is scheduled for 15h00 (SA time), while Wydad Casablanca and Horoya, who are both on four points, will meet in a top-of-the-table clash in Conakry at 18h00 (SA time).