Sundowns gear for tough test
Johan Neeskens (Gallo Images)
Johannesburg - Mamelodi Sundowns boss Johan Neeskens believes his side will be in for a difficult time when they meet AmaZulu in their Telkom Knockout quarter-final in Umlazi on Saturday.
"We can expect a tough game against a team that is very motivated," Neeskens said on Tuesday.
"They won in the Telkom Knockout (first round) and then drew with Pirates (in the league), more or less the same as we did. We also won in the cup and then drew with Ajax.
"They are more or less in the same position as we are but I also think that AmaZulu have got their confidence back and so did we."
Neeskens said his players were eager to build on their recent form.
"I think we can expect a very interesting game on Saturday," said the Dutch mentor.
"We know that we have to play the game and we could be knocked out, so we know this, you can win it or lose it. That's normal.
"We are preparing until Friday and we are looking good."
The Brazilians qualified for the quarter-finals with a 1-0 victory over Tuks and Neeskens was looking forward to another competitive game against their hosts.
"I saw improvement in our last two games and also that the confidence is back for many players," he said.
"It can still get better. I think we can still improve in the final third of the pitch, but I have seen positives and we have to build on that.
"Knowing that we haven't lost twice in a row, we have to build on that and build toward a positive result this weekend."
Sundowns suffered a poor start to their league campaign, claiming a single win from their first eight matches, and Neeskens said the cup competition was a priority for the Brazilians.
"We are focussed and we don't want to concede but we have to keep working," he said.
"Everybody wants to win and we are the same. We want to go all the way.
"Every team left in the cup can win it and we are one of them."