Mon, 22 Apr 2019

Cape Town - Former Mamelodi Sundowns defender Fabian McCarthy believes the club can defeat Al Ahly and go all the way to win the Champions League for a second time.

Sundowns were drawn against the Egyptian giants in the quarterfinals with the first leg set to take place in early April in South Africa.

The two sides last met previously in 2007 in the last 16 when the Brazilians went down 4-2.

McCarthy told Goal.com website: "Well, it will all depend on how they play in the first-leg encounter at home."

The retired star was in the Downs squad that played Al Ahly in the 2001 final of the competition and he emphasised the importance of a first leg advantage. In that contest the first game ended 1-1 before the Egyptians ran out 3-0 winners in the second.

He continued: "The first-leg result is important because I played against Al Ahly in the 2001 final and they beat us, unfortunately.

"South African teams tend to be drawn against Egyptian clubs in the knockout stages of the Champions League.

"Coach Pitso will make sure that the team is well prepared for the two matches against Al Ahly.

"Sundowns have done very well despite juggling between a congested league season and travelling around the continent for the Champions League.

"Coach Pitso wants the second star on that Sundowns jersey and I think they can go all the way and win the competition.

"They can do it. Looking at the PSL title (race), I definitely believe they will defend their trophy."

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