Mamelodi Sundowns' Zwane set to play against Al Ahly - Mngqithi
Mamelodi Sundowns coach Manqoba Mngqithi is hoping that “everything goes according to plan” as they are working to have Themba Zwane fit for Saturday’s Caf Champions League quarter-final, first leg tie away at Al Ahly.
Zwane's fitness has been a major concern for the past few days after injuring his hamstring during a Premier Soccer League match against Maritzburg United last Wednesday, a game in which he featured for just 12 minutes.
While there was worry he could be out for a long period of time, Sundowns moved in to allay the fears and the player was expected to make a cameo appearance against TS Galaxy on Sunday.
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But after missing that match, Mngqithi says the chances of Zwane featuring against Al Ahly look bright.
“We are hopeful with the doctors and it looks like he will be able to play in the next match in Egypt …we are hopeful that everything goes according to plan,” said Mngqithi as per Phakaaathi.
“It [the injury] never really looked serious, we had to be a little bit cautious to make sure that we don’t aggravate it and that is why we took him out early against Maritzburg without even giving him a chance.”
Not being played against TS Galaxy has been seen as a precaution to preserve Zwane for the Al Ahly match.
It is yet to be seen if he will start when Sundowns face their former coach Pitso Mosimane, who will be in charge of the defending Champions League champions.
Mngqithi also explained that Zwane’s injury was never as serious as initially thought.
“It was never a tear but it was a strain that could have easily resulted in a tear had he couldn’t continue with the match and that is why the doctors said within a week or 10 days he would he would be able to come back and help and we have enough days now before our next game,” Mngqithi added.
It will be the third consecutive season in which Sundowns have met Ahly in the Champions League last eight.