Kaizer Chiefs boss Gavin Hunt wary of Al Ahly slayers Simba FC
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CAPE TOWN - Kaizer Chiefs coach Gavin Hunt is under no illusions of the daunting task ahead of his team in the CAF Champions League quarter-finals.
Chiefs, who will be playing in the CAF Champions League knockout stages for the first time, were drawn against Tanzanian league champions Simba FC.
The Amakhosi had earlier stunned the continent by qualifying for the last-eight by edging out Guinea Ligue 1 champions Horoya to the runners-up spot in Group C.
But despite dodging locals rivals Mamelodi Sundowns and Egyptian giants Al Ahly in Friday's quarter-final draw, it remains a massive challenge ahead of Chiefs in the two-legged tie.
Simba had an impressive run in the group stages and topped a tough pool that included Al Ahly, AS Vita Club of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Al Merrikh of Sudan.
They finished the group engagements with four wins, one defeat, and a draw to top the pool with 13 points; two more than Pitso Mosimane's reigning champions, Al Ahly.
"It is a tough draw, but we knew that any team now would be a tough draw. Simba ... they had a good group stage and did very well. They beat Al Ahly, so they are certainly a team we can't take lightly. It will be a very tough game but all we can do is focus on the next game and take it from there," Hunt said.
Meanwhile, Chiefs brand manager Jessica Motaung is much more confident of her team advancing, particularly in this special year.
"This is a very historic moment for the club. We have just celebrated our 50th anniversary and we are very happy with the draw," said Motaung.
“We are very ambitious and it's always been our desire to get into the final and win the title and to make history. This is an exciting time for us and we look forward to the challenge ahead.
Chiefs will host the Tanzanian champions in the first leg tie that is expected to be played between May 14 and 15 before the second leg encounter to be hosted in Dar es Salaam between May 21 and 22.
The trip north will be particularly tough as Simba have hosted up to 10 000 fans inside their stadium during the group stages, while Chiefs have played in empty venues since the Covid-19 enforced lockdown last year.