After playing an amazing game and drawing in their debut African Champions League game against defending champion Mamelodi Sundown, Ethiopian champion Saint George are feeling confident about their Tuesday match when they host Esperance of Tunisia.
Striker Salhadin Said and the Premier League’s most versatile player, Mentesenot Adane, return to the squad which is a big plus for head coach Martinus Nooij.
In a press conference in which he appeared outraged, Sundown head coach Pitso Mosimane said it was the worst game they had ever played and that their team had hardly touched the ball, Saint George mounted a heroic defensive performance keeping the much talked about Sundown squad at bay, despite the fact that they feature professionals from five different nations including Brazil. What Mosimane forgot is that the visitors were without Salhadin Said, their one man strike force due to suspension and the all rounder Mentesnot Adane. As head coach Nooij put it the result was hard earned.
Owned by Africa’s first black billionaire and Fortune’s World 847th richest person worth 2.2 billion, the Sundowns expected an easy victory. However they were foiled by incredible tactical discipline and a well versed counter attack backed by astonishing and vocal travelling supporters, St. George took the home side by sheer surprise and returned home with a priceless away point.
Tuesday is sure to be a new story as St. George has already shown it can play. Many St. George supporters believe their team must win all home games in order to keep the dream of making it to the quarter final. If St. George can manage a win in all three home matches, the likelyhood of joining the last eight is very feasible. Martinus Nooij will have his hands full.