SuperSport United know what to expect from TP Mazembe, says Aubrey Modiba

SuperSport United, Aubrey Modiba
Modiba remains unfazed despite Matsatsantsa needing to turn around a deficit against the Ravens on Saturday

SuperSport United are currently on the verge of making history for themselves as they look to secure their maiden continental crown when they face off against TP Mazembe in the return leg of their Caf Confederation Cup final on Saturday night.

Matsatsantsa go into the clash buoyed on by the fact they left Lubumbashi with a crucial away goal thanks to an audacious Sipho Mbule strike. But before SuperSport can get too excited they will need to turn around a 2-1 deficit.

However, speaking ahead of the weekend’s continental showcase, SuperSport’s Aubrey Modiba remains highly optimistic. The 22-year-old who has become a highly influential figure in coach Eric Tinkler’s plans explains that after playing against the Ravens thrice (twice in the group stages and the first leg), they now know what to expect from their opponents.

“Obviously, we are looking forward to the game,” Modiba told Goal.

“Right now, we know what to expect because we’ve played three times if I’m not mistaken. So yeah, we know their players, we know their strengths, we know their weaknesses and the only thing that let us down in DRC is that we couldn’t convert our chances,” he explained.

With Mazembe taking a slender lead into the second leg, one could be forgiven for thinking that the Congolese giants may choose to sit back and utilise a more pragmatic approach, but Modiba certainly doesn’t agree.

“I think TP Mazembe is like the biggest team on the continent,” he said.

“I don’t think they will sit back and defend, they will also want to win because they know they are a big time and we are just expecting more or less the same game they had in Lubumbashi. But I think right now they will be cautious at the back, they will make sure they don’t concede as well as us, but I don’t think they will change much in terms of their approach and the players that they had in Lubumbashi because those are quality players. So, we are expecting more or less the same game,” he added.

Meanwhile, Modiba is enjoying a bit of purple patch this season, finding the back of the net on a more regular basis as he has made the shift from full-back to left winger, and he says that his new-found confidence is down to coach Tinkler’s belief in him.

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“I think the confidence the coach has put in me, I think he believes in his players, and I think that played a big role in that and my confidence as well in front of goal. I’ve been working hard on my finishing because that’s what has been letting me down like I would be one-on-one with the keeper but still miss, but I’ve managed to work on that but it’s paying off,” he emphasised.

Nonetheless, with another trophy potentially on the horizon, Modiba admits that this could be the biggest one yet.

“It feels great because this is not just any final, like we won the MTN 8, we’ve been in the Nedbank Cup final, this is a different one, A continental one. It is a huge one not everyone has been in the continental final, and I’m happy to be part of the history and we just hope we make history on Saturday, but we just have to work hard and make sure that we put the country on the map,” he concluded.