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Mamelodi Sundowns head coach Manqoba Mngqithi would not be drawn into condemning the actions of attacking midfielder Gaston Sirino, who last weekend donned the jersey of Caf Champions League rivals Al Ahly.
Speculation had been rife late last year that Sirino was wanted by Al Ahly and the player was quoted confirming his interest in joining former Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane at the nine-time Champions League winners.
Masandawana had to issue a hard-hitting statement on the matter and since then Sirino has gradually and of late, increasingly played himself back into the technical team’s plans.
But he didn’t help his cause last weekend in North Africa by wearing an Al Ahly shirt after his side’s 2-0 defeat.
“It’s always good that a big team like Al Ahly to be interested in me. I’m very focused to keep playing well to appear and then we’ll see what happens,” Sirino told Sky News Arabia.
Sometimes a scoreline can be misleading, and this was arguably the case when Al Ahly beat Mamelodi Sundowns 2-0 in Cairo last weekend in a Caf Champions League quarter-final first leg encounter.
For Sundowns supporters, there are several reasons to believe that their team can overturn the deficit and book their spot in the semi-finals, where they could find themselves up against local rivals Kaizer Chiefs.
To do that, the Tshwane side will have to score at least twice – a 2-0 scoreline would take the match to penalties – where there is no extra time scheduled.