AmaZulu will fight against TP Mazembe, says Benni McCarthy
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DURBAN - AmaZulu coach Benni McCarthy has vowed that his side will fight until the death when they meet TP Mazembe in their CAF Champions League second preliminary round second leg at the Stade TP Mazembe in Congo on Saturday afternoon.
The five-time African champions Mazembe will certainly be the favourites to advance from the tie after the first leg ended in a goalless draw in Durban last week.
“We did not get the result that we wanted from the first leg but we have a chance away. We can go there and bring a good result. We have a chance to go there and do something special and magical that has never been done by AmaZulu before. We are still in the game and will give our best. We know what to expect and what we need to do to win. We are ready to battle and open another chapter,” said McCarthy.
Should Usuthu prevail against Mazembe, it will be a major shock. Not only will AmaZulu face a hostile and difficult atmosphere in Congo but they will also be against a side that has significantly more continental experience than them.
However, there is nothing to lose for AmaZulu. They have proven before that they know what it takes to prevail against the odds.
McCarthy’s side played out to a 1-0 defeat against Malawian side Nyasa Big Bullets in their first preliminary round first leg in Durban last month. They then went to Malawi and got an away win against their opponents, winning 3-1 and advancing 3-2 on aggregate from the tie.
While Mazembe seldomly loses at their home ground, McCarthy can also take inspiration from South African rivals Mamelodi Sundowns who managed to inflict a 2-1 defeat on the Congolese giants at their home ground in a group stage game during last season’s Champions League.
In what will be good news for AmaZulu, they will be expected to field a full-strength side against Mazembe.
Zambian star Augustine Mulenga who missed much of the early season games due to injury will likely start the game as will in-form and key striker Bongi Ntuli while Veli Mothwa can be expected to provide a commanding presence in goal.