Mamelodi Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane has once again come out to highlight how his team’s fixture congestion is a struggle many teams can’t really relate to.
Sundowns returned to Absa Premiership business with a slender 1-0 win over AmaZulu on Tuesday. The win reduced Kaizer Chiefs' log lead to seven but before Amakhosi increased the tally to 10 points after hammering Stellenbosch 4-0 in Cape Town last night.
“You have to run the same Comrades Marathon and then you can tell me about Comrades Marathon. As long as you don’t run this Comrades Marathon, you don’t understand it because you don’t know that you are forced to make changes,” Mosimane said via IOL after the AmaZulu win.
“You don’t know how to make eight changes. You don’t know how is the mood of Telkom Knockout compared to this game. This game, it is a difficult game. You come from a Telkom game where you’ve just reached the final and the mood is high. You can get too excited and trip. Sometimes it helps to put those who were not part of the Telkom. They want their own celebration and they did well.”
With Sundowns set to begin the CAF Champions League Group phase this weekend, Mosimane stressed how the programme will strain his team’s title chase.
“Only two teams can propose the changing of fixtures in the league. Only two teams. It is us and Bidvest Wits. No-one else.”
“The rest are well-rested teams. They play every Sunday. They can do the shopping on Wednesday and they can fetch children from school. We don’t fetch children from school because we are in camp,” he quipped, adding that well-rested teams cannot deem themselves to be in competition with the likes of his Sundowns, who play at least three times a week and travel extensively.”
“Know your space, know where you are and play in that lane. That’s all. Come to the fast lane and only then can you talk about the fast lane. Don’t talk from the slow lane. Take the right lane, not the left lane, and when people come, tell them to move away. That’s the lane and then we can talk about driving fast,” Pitso continued.
“May determines everything. The fat lady sings in May. At the moment we are in a process. At the moment the trophy is in Chloorkop. We are defending it. You have to come and take it. For us, it is 19 games to go. It is a long way."
“We’ve had our slump. We haven’t been there (on top of our game). You know we are not yet there but slowly we are coming back. Every team hits a slump. The question is how long is your slump going to be. How do you handle that because you’ve been on a honeymoon,” concluded the man they call “Jingles.”
Sundowns will face Angola’s Petro de Luanda in Pretoria on Saturday evening.