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Mamelodi Sundowns

Inside Downs' Lubumbashi Preparations

Mamelodi Sundowns’ next CAF Champions League opponents are a team “with very complex personalities,” co-coach Rulani Mokwena has said.

Read: Olympic Squad Cut - 78 To 40

The Brazilians are in Lubumbashi to face DRC giants TP Mazembe in their third group stages encounter, and it’s the hosts who are desperate for a win.

Downs have managed a full haul of six points in their opening games – a win at home against Al Hilal of Sudan and an away victory against CR Belouizdad, though the Algerians were forced to play this game at a neutral venue in Tanzania.  

Mazembe drew against both those teams.

“Very good team and defensively very strong. We’ve watched their last three matches – the derby (against Saint Eloi Lupopo), then Al Hilal and Belouizdad (in the Champions League),” Mokwena told the media in his assessment of Mazembe.  

“So in relation to what we have seen, we know their approach. We need to prepare ourselves for a team with very complex personalities. They can be very aggressive, pushing the wingers and full backs very high, but can also be very conservative – sitting on the block and play on counter attacks because they’ve got very fast players upfront. It will be interesting to see what personality they adopt because they need the three points more than us.”  

The Champions League fixture is scheduled for Saturday at 3pm at the Stade TP Mazembe in Lubumbashi, where no fans are expected.

Read: Chiefs Rule Out Khune After Family Tragedy 

Scroll through the gallery above to see Downs' departure and training sessions in the DRC 

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