Former Mamelodi Sundowns midfielder Joel Masilela has praised the Brazilians for thrashing Republic of the Congo club AS Otoho d'Oyo 4-0 in their Caf Champions League match on Saturday night, admitting the 2016 African champions were under pressure to reach the next stage.
Masilela believes the Tshwane giants had everything under control as they looked to erase the 2-1 loss they suffered away in the first leg a fortnight ago.
On the other hand, the retired winger also encouraged the reigning Premier Soccer League (PSL) champions to remain level-headed as they are set to face a team from Seychelles in the next round of the continental showpiece.
“The application was correct it won us the match, the attitude was spot on and you could see the desire and the energy from the boys. I think we wanted it the most and it was evident in how we started the game,” Masilela told Goal.
“We lost away and it was a bit of pressure on the boys to bounce back at home but because of the attitude and professionalism, it was possible.
“It was very important to stick to the game plan and ensure we unsettle them as early as possible. I expected them to park the bus but the early goal pushed them to come out and play.
“We did everything right, the passing was right, the rotation was good and we the transition was spot on as we forced them to commit errors because we wanted the early goal."
Speaking about the changes in the side - with the likes of Anele Ngcongca, Sphelele Mkhulise, and Emiliano Tade coming on in the encounter - Masilela heaped praise on the technical team led by Pitso Mosimane.
“Credit must go to the technical team because the behaviour was correct, it’s obvious coach Pitso had a plan to get a win out of the match,” he continued.
"The guys that played were fresh and I was impressed with many of them including [Andile] Jali. Sundowns pressed from the beginning and the Congolese eventually cracked, the early goal meant they must come out and play and that opened the flood gates.
“It was a great performance and I like the fact that coach Pitso introduced the substitutes, the new players to freshen the team especially in the second half.
"It was a more relaxed affair in the second half and the ball rotation of the ball was excellent.
“A 4-0 win at home was good and it could have been more, but we cannot say it was easy because this is a big tournament and all the teams want to upset the big guns, we don’t need to undermine anyone going forward."