As one of the top leagues in Africa, the South African Premier Soccer League is yet to have a team really dominating on the continental stage. Egypt’s Al Ahly and Ghana’s Hearts of Oak can be considered one of Africa’s giants because of their success in the CAF Champions League and CAF Confederation Cup.
With Orlando Pirates being the only SA team to have won the Champion’s League, with Mamelodi Sundowns reaching the CCL Final in 2001 just once and with Kaizer Chiefs not fully committed in continental completion… What are the gems they could extract from each other’s experiences in Africa?
Amakhosi, for starters, began the season knowing that going into Africa will require a much bigger squad of players capable of winning the competition. This showed that even domestically the team struggles in the final quarter of the campaign, as the first team regulars began to feel the strain of a busy schedule.
Sundowns, as we know, are prolific in the transfer window but they always sign with the hope of competing continentally, as they tend to sign many players from North Africa. In spite of this, Downs don’t do too well when playing in the CAF Champions League.
What could these two clubs learn from each other? In a nutshell, they could revise their signing policy and manage the squad better by making the CAF competition a priority.
Pirates may feel a tad bit safe in this regard, as they are the only team competing for African glory, albeit in the less prestigious CAF Confederation Cup.
Despite having more experience continentally, they too could do with a squad beefed up with African talents in a bid to go that extra mile and ensure they win in Africa again.
South African clubs have a long way to go continentally, however, I do feel that they could learn from each other in this regard.
Will Chiefs, Downs and Bucs become African powerhouses if given the time to grow in the completion?