'Zamalek coach made it hard for Al Ahly' - Mosimane after clinching another Caf Champions League crown

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Pitso Mosimane, Al Ahly, November 2020
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The ex-Mamelodi Sundowns tactician joins a small group of coaches who have won Africa’s elite club competition with different teams

Al Ahly coach Pitso Mosimane has admitted that Friday’s Caf Champions League triumph was no stroll in the park after defeating old foes Zamalek 2-1 at Cairo International Stadium.

Amr Al Sulaya thrust Al Ahly ahead five minutes into the match before veteran striker Shikabala hit back for Zamalek on the half-hour mark.

Mohamed Magdi Kafsha then grabbed Al Ahly’s winner four minutes from time to hand the club their ninth Champions League crown.

This trophy comes a little less than two months after Mosimane was appointed coach of the Cairo giants which is his first-ever coaching job outside South Africa.

“I came here to win the African trophy but it was a very tough one. As we always say, finals are won not played,” said Mosimane after the game as per Al Ahram.

“I have to say Zamalek coach made it very hard for us in the first half because he prevented us from playing our normal game. Shikabala scored an amazing goal. I talked to my players at half time and told them that we need to improve.

“I made some changes in my tactics in the second half and asked the players to press Zamalek players more and more as I saw they were getting tired and losing form. We needed to press their midfield and that's what gave us the second goal.”

Friday’s triumph saw Mosimane also sealing a personal milestone of having won Champions League titles with two different sides, after bagging the 2016 crown with Mamelodi Sundowns.

Other coaches to have attained that feat are the later Argentine Oscar Fullone who won it with Ivorian giants Asec Mimosas and Raja Casablanca, while Mahmoud El Gohary also claimed it twice with Al Ahly and Zamalek.

Interestingly, Mosimane’s Champions League medals have come after dismissing Zamalek in the final.

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“I have to thank president Mahmoud El Khatib for giving me, an African coach, the chance to lead one of the greatest clubs in Africa,” Mosimane added.

“I also want to thank the board, staff and players who gave me a great welcome to accomplish my job. Now we have to focus on the Egypt Cup, African Super Cup and Club World Cup.”

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