Stars de­fender gives the low­down on win

The Citizen (KZN) - - SPORT - Michael­son Gumede

Pitso Mosi­mane (right) and his Mamelodi Sun­downs out­fit got their 2018/19 Caf Cham­pi­ons League cam­paign off to a bad start after they suf­fered a 2-1 shock away de­feat at Nige­rian side Lobi Stars on Fri­day.

The Nige­rian cam­paign­ers, who are known as the Pride of Benue, made sure Masan­dawana did not get to cel­e­brate a 10-game un­beaten run in all com­pe­ti­tions, as Downs lost even though they took the lead through An­thony Laf­for in the first half.

A greater con­cern for Sun­downs is that they are con­tin­u­ing to strug­gle on their trav­els in the Cham­pi­ons League, with their last away suc­cess in the group stages dat­ing back to a 2017 1-0 vic­tory in Ethiopia against Saint Ge­orge.

Stars’ de­fender Ebube Duru told that he en­joyed the match against the 2016 Cham­pi­ons and said their de­ter­mi­na­tion saw them get the bet­ter of the Brazil­ians.

“It was one of the best games I have ever played be­cause the in­ten­sity was there and the game fin­ished on a high note,” he said.

“The play­ers of both teams played very well and had the de­sire to win. We fol­lowed the in­struc­tions of the coach es­pe­cially in the sec­ond half and this helped us to se­cure the win.

“We re­verted to our wing play and tried to press them with a view to keep­ing them on their toes in the sec­ond half. We also won be­cause of our de­ter­mi­na­tion to se­cure three points from our home game,” he added.

Duru went on to speak highly of debu­tants Sun­day Ade­tunji and Dare Ojo for their stel­lar dis­plays, say­ing the two looked as though they had been with the club for a con­sid­er­able time.

“Both Sun­day Ade­tunji and Dare Ojo have played on the con­ti­nent be­fore and their ex­pe­ri­ence showed. Ade­tunji re­ally sur­prised me be­cause he only joined us a few days ago and he played for us as if he had been with us for a long time,” said Duru.

Downs’ next as­sign­ment in the Cham­pi­ons League is a visit from African gi­ants Wy­dad Casablanca of Mo­rocco this com­ing week­end, but first, Sun­downs will have to fo­cus on their Absa Premier­ship ti­tle de­fence as they wel­come Mar­itzburg United in the cap­i­tal city on Wed­nes­day.

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