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CAF Champions League

Mamelodi Sundowns coach Mokwena finds Klopp inspiration after Petro de Luanda defeat

13:11 GMT+3 17/04/2022
Rhulani Mokwena Mamelodi Sundowns
The Brazilians went down 2-1 in Angola in what was a Caf Champions first leg quarter-final game, the return fixture in Joburg next Saturday

Mamelodi Sundowns co-coach Rhulani Mokwena has found inspiration in Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp after their defeat to Petro de Luanda on Saturday.

In a pulsating match in the Luanda, both teams spurned numerous other chances to score, with Masandawana also hitting the woodwork through Themba Zwane and having a late goal from Neo Maema ruled offside.

With the second leg to come on Saturday evening at the FNB Stadium in Soweto, all is not lost for Sundowns in their quest to qualify for the semi-finals.

And commenting after the game in Luanda, Downs co-coach Mokwena revealed that he will turn to the words of Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp for inspiration, explaining that it was a match Sundowns could possibly afford to lose.

“I’m reminded of something Jurgen Klopp actually told me when I visited Melwood," he was quoted by iDiskiTimes.

"I never thought I’d use it because I’m a coach that wants to win every single match. In football either win, lose or draw, you have all those possibilities every time a match starts.

“Jurgen Klopp said me, ‘coach, if you want to succeed in football, lose the right match’.

"And I think we lost the right match because it doesn’t knock us out, we still have a chance to make it.”

Mokwena felt that his men lacked 'focus and aggression' in the first half, but was pleased with what he saw after the interval.

"We showed that we’re much better than our first-half performance - in the second half, we created more goal opportunities, had more final-third entries, controlled the game a bit more," he said.

Masandawana are trying to win the Caf Champions League for the second time, having claimed the trophy in 2016 under former coach Pitso Mosimane.

The Pretoria club are also chasing a quadruple of trophies this season. They already have the MTN8 in the bag, lead Royal AM by 13 points in the league, and play the same team in the Nedbank Cup semi-finals.