South Africa will be hoping they have the right game plan against Egypt as they look to complete a win over the Pharaohs. Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix
Roger de Sa was at the helm for Orlando Pirates when they trounced Al Ahly 3-0 in the group stage of the CAF Champions League in 2013. He told Independent Media what worked for Pirates in 2013 against the Egyptian giants.

“We’ve got a chance. We (Bafana) have nothing to lose. The pressure is on them. How we did it in the past was simple: Don’t play like them because they are better than us. We played our way, we used speed. We played at 100km per hour. Even when the ball was out, we put it in back into play quickly. It worked for us because we won 3-0 in their own yard,” De Sa reminisced.

He added: “If you want to play like them, they will beat you. They are well structured and love building from the back.

“They are physical and we couldn’t compete with them physically. We capitalised on speed. Stuart (Baxter) must emphasise on speed.

“We have to go for it and not sit back. We have to play to our strengths. No one is giving us a chance, so they must go all out and the rest will take care of itself.”

Cavin Johnson dispatched Al Ahly 2-1 in a CAF Champions League encounter in 2008 during his spell with Platinum Stars. He shared his experience of beating the finest team in Africa.

“Work ethic is always important against the north African opposition,” he explained.

“You have to be tactically aware of what they bring into the game. Technically they are also good. They don’t have too many tricks like us.

“They play simple and go forward. Catch them on the break. Psychological factors also will be key for Bafana.

“North Africans love to go down (diving), complain to the referee and swear. You’ve got to be able to handle that,” Johnson added.

Mamelodi Sundowns’ master tactician Pitso Mosimane, who recently put Al Ahly to the sword, hammering them 5-0, explained the danger that Egypt are likely to pose against Bafana tonight.

“Egypt are very strong on both flanks,” he said.

“On the left they have Ashraf (Mohamed Mansour) and Trezeguet, who is right-footed and thus cuts inside and does so very aggressively.

“Ashraf is a left centre-back for Al Ahly but they are using him as a left back. On the right they have Al Mohamady and Mohamed Salah.

“The Liverpool man (Salah) is just like Trezeguet because he is left-footed but plays on the right,” Mosimane said.


Saturday Star

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