Al Ahly coach Pitso Mosimane has praised Kaizer Chiefs for reaching the CAF Champions League final, but says there were no surprises from the AmaKhosi as his team romped to a 3-0 victory to lift the trophy for a 10th time.
Mosimane became the second most successful coach in Champions League history with three ones, one fewer that Manuel Jose, who claimed four Titles with Ahly in the early 2000s.
If he was expecting a few tricks up the sleeve from Chiefs in the decider, there were none, and he says the game played out exactly as he expected, though admitted his side benefitted from the deserved red card dished out to Happy Mashiane just before halftime.
“You cannot blame Kaizer Chiefs over the score or result,” Mosimane says. “Of course, because they got a red card that gave us an opportunity, but even before the red card, the tactics were the same, everything came out expected, we didn’t change our tactics and they didn’t change theirs. Why should they if they reached the CAF Champions League final?
“You can criticise them but they’ve reached the final, so for those who have better tactics, why are they not in the final? So, let’s be humble and respect each other teams and the way they play – it’s not for me to criticise because we won.
“The surprise was probably coach [Stuart] Baxter on the bench if I’m not mistaken or maybe Khama [Billiat] coming on, I kept looking for the surprise. My analyst was intensive in scouting Kaizer Chiefs even their pictures [on social media].
“In their training sessions, the players who were wearing the [dark green] bibs, we know those were going to start, so I knew the starting line-up because we are professionals, we are hawks.
“And the game came out as expected to be honest because what’s good is that both teams stuck to their principles, which showed maturity.”