Saturday Oct 03, 2020. 12:00
New Al Ahly manager Pitso Mosimane says taking over the Egyptian club is a “big honour” and he has backed the team’s ability to win the CAF Champions League.
The South African tactician left Mamelodi Sundowns earlier this week after a trophy-laden eight years in charge of the club – including a treble in the recently-completed 2019-20 season.
He was unveiled as the Red Devils’ new boss on Friday, replacing Swiss predecessor Rene Weiler.
“It’s a big opportunity, big club, and a big honour for me,” Mosimane said on Al Ahly’s channel, as quoted by KingFut.
“I have huge respect for the Al Ahly badge. I can’t say much about the team because I just arrived but I have an idea because I just faced them in the [CAF Champions League] quarterfinals when I was managing Mamelodi Sundowns.
“So I can talk from that experience but what you see outside is not what you see inside, and when you know the players closely, then you have a different opinion.
“I haven’t been able to follow Al Ahly’s games in the league because I was finishing the league and cup with Sundowns.
“But I know the team has good character, good spirit, and they have a winning mentality and they fight for winning. But all the big teams in the world have good things and have other things to improve.
“The team is strong enough to win the Champions League, so we’ll go for it. If you go through the semifinal, you might as well win the final and the tournament.
“We still have four games in the league, which will give me a good idea about the team but the most important for me is the assistant coaches and the people who have been with the team to focus on the things that took us the semifinals.
“There is no time to start over and we have to focus on the semifinal games and complete the competition then we will have time to look inside and see what we need to improve the team.
“I rely on the coaching staff, the senior players and everyone in the club to keep the momentum going. I am not here to change anything. We are in the semi-final, let’s go to the final.”
Ahly are scheduled to face Morocco’s Wydad Casablanca on 17 and 23 October in the semifinals of the Champions League, with the winners taking on either Zamalek or Raja Casablanca in the final.