A month after turning down Caf’s proposal to use FNB Stadium for their Champions League home matches because it is used by rivals Kaizer Chiefs, Mamelodi Sundowns have changed their minds as they will play Al Ahly in Soweto on Saturday.
The iconic FNB Stadium is the home of one of Sundowns’ rivals in domestic league competition, Chiefs.
But Sundowns Kennedy Mweene believes winning the upcoming clash against the Egyptian giants matters the most to South Africans as the club is on national duty.
The Brazilians can’t use any of the stadiums in Tshwane as they don’t meet the Caf standards. And before eventually agreeing to use FNB, they played their last Champions League host game against Al Hilal at the Royal Bafokeng Stadium in the North West.
However, Manqoba Mngqithi recently said the stadium is not in good condition for a high-profile game; hence they opted for FNB.
“Our first game was also played away, we played the match in Rustenburg, and there’s nothing that we can do. We have to go and play at the FNB Stadium,” said Mweene.
“At the end of the day, we are playing at home, we are used to playing at FNB, I think it’s about the country at the moment, and not about the [Premier Soccer League] PSL, I think we are okay with it, and we are looking forward to the game on Saturday.”
Sundowns will be looking to make it back-to-back wins against Pitso Mosimane’s Ahly, as they beat them on Egyptian soil 1-0 two weekends ago to go top of Group A.
“One thing we must not take advantage of is thinking that because we are at home and we have rested a bit while Al Ahly has been playing their games, I think that is the biggest mistake we can make,” added Mweene.
“We just have to work extra hard because we know that whether they’ve rested or not, they will come at us, and we just have to be prepared.”