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Kaizer Chiefs legend Tovey expects 'a tall order in Caf Champions League quarter-finals'

17:35 BST 27/04/2021
Siyabonga Ngezana, Erick Mathoho, Samir Nurkovic, Kaizer Chiefs, April 2021
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Former Kaizer Chiefs defender Neil Tovey was pleased to see Amakhosi show they “can still do it and perform on the big stage” following last weekend’s 2-1 Premier Soccer League win over Mamelodi Sundowns, a victory he believes will motivate them in the Caf Champions League knockout rounds.

While Tovey also says reaching the Champions League last eight could prove to be a mammoth task for the Soweto giants, he is of the opinion the triumph over Sundowns at Loftus Versfeld was of huge significance.

Amakhosi now wait to know their quarter-final opponents in the continent’s premier club competition, and there is a possibility that they could be paired against Masandawana from the draw to be conducted on Friday.

“It’s going to be a tall order, but when it gets to the knockout stages you start doing things in your mind that translates to the pitch,” Tovey told Chiefs’ website.

“Beating Mamelodi Sundowns this weekend was a big morale-boosting win for the club ahead of the Caf Champions League draw this week. It shows the club can still do it and perform on the big stage.”

Chiefs reached the Champions League quarter-finals in their first-ever season participating in the tournament’s group stage.

While struggling on the domestic front, they were given little chance to advance to the knockout phase of the more demanding continental competition.

Tovey urges Amakhosi to maintain "top" concentration levels as they brace for bigger challenges in Africa.

“So, my message to the club and to the players is 'go out and enjoy the occasion and the experience',” continued Tovey.

“Their concentration levels need to be top, top, top, but they need to go out there and do what they know they’re good at and anything is possible.”

Before engaging in Champions League football, Chiefs’ immediate worry now is Wednesday’s home league match against Chippa United at FNB Stadium.

They go into that match smarting from the win over Sundowns and face a side trying to avoid relegation.

Chippa are second-from-bottom, just three points better off than basement side Black Leopards.

The fact that Amakhosi face a relegation-haunted side is also a threat to their top-eight ambitions.