With one match to go and a chance to join Mamelodi Sundowns as the second South African team to participate in next season’s CAF Champions League, Cape Town City seem to have even bigger plans for their 2022/23 campaign that should serve as a warning for the Brazilians.
Having managed to hold Downs to two draws in their home and away fixtures in the DStv Premiership this season and after narrowly losing to them in the penalty shoot-out in the MTN8 final, the Citizens are having plans to dethrone the Chloorkop outfit of their dominance, according to the club’s head coach Eric Tinkler.
Though admitting that it would be a daunting task to compete with the Brazilians in signing the best possible players available on the market, Tinkler believes that with proper planning the Mother City outfit could challenge the league champions on winning trophies despite having limited resources.
“I think, you know, Mamelodi Sundowns are on their own plateau, I don’t think anybody can really truly compete with them financially. But I think the work that we put in here, if we can and I still believe we’re only playing at about 60% to 70% of our true capacity or capability as a team and I think with the quality that we have in our squad that is we start performing to our maximum ability I think we can compete against them,” said Tinkler, speaking to the media.
“But like I said to you before, we are slightly constrained because we can’t carry a big squad like Mamelodi Sundowns and obviously next season if we do go into CAF, that means we are going to have to strengthen the squad, have a slightly bigger squad than what we currently have and that comes with the good and the bad unfortunately. The good is that you have more choices available to yourself and the bad is managing those players, then it becomes more complicated in terms of trying to manage everyone because everybody wants to play, everybody wants to be in the starting line-up.
“So, truthfully, we believe that we can compete against them and that’s going to be our objective next season, it’s to do that. We did compete against them this season, we had a pretty good record against them this season but realistically they have the ability to buy any player they wish at any standard that they wish, and we don’t have that ability to match them in that area. But we’ll fight them on the field with grit, tenacity and determination and that counts for something, and I think that’s also important, and I think that’s what we’ve shown in this second half of the season,” the April 2022 DStv Premiership Coach of the Month award winner said.
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