Defending champions Mamelodi Sundowns Ladies will be aiming to retain their continental crown as they square off against Moroccan hosts AS FAR in the final of the CAF Women’s Champions League in Rabat.
Banyana Ba Style reached the final of the competition thanks to a second-half goal from Boitumelo Rabale in the hard-fought 1-0 win against Tanzania’s Simba Queens. The Brazilians have now scored 12 goals in this year’s competition, 8 more than they managed in 2021 when they scored 4 goals.
Sundowns Ladies began this year’s group stages with a 2-1 win over Nigeria’s Bayelsa Queens. The Brazilians then registered an emphatic 5-0 win over Egypt’s Wadi Degla before wrapping up the group stage with a solid 4-0 win over Congo’s TP Mazembe.
AS FAR on the other hand began the group stage with a 1-0 win over Simba Queens, before sealing a 2-1 win over Zambia’s Green Buffaloes in their second game. The hosts wrapped up their group stage with a 2-0 win over Liberia’s Determine Girls. The Moroccan side then beat Nigeria Bayelsa Queens by a lone goal to secure their place in Sunday’s final.
Ahead of the clash against the Moroccan side, Coach Jerry Tshabalala has backed his troops to handle the pressures that come with defending the title they won last year.
“We are no strangers to playing against North African teams. Last year, we drew them during the group stages, and we beat Wadi Degla this year. So we are aware of the threat they possess, and we will be aiming to capitalise on the experience we have gotten against them. There are several subplots ahead of this final because our opponents will be aiming to break our record at the competition. Nevertheless, we are confident of our chances, and we will be ready to give everything on the pitch as usual because we are aware of what is at stake,” Kappa stated.
Coach Jerry has also branded his players as ‘soldiers’ as they embark on another history-defining clash.
“I have so much belief in my players because they have defied the odds on numerous occasions. Like last year, this final is another opportunity to create more history in the competition and my charges are hungry for more success. The final won’t be an easy one, but these are the kind of games that defines our unrivalled quality. They are very good at playing back from the back; hence, we must be cautious, and our pressing game must be spot on,” Kappa concluded.
Vice-captain, Karabo Makhurubetshi also highlighted how the growth of women’s football in Africa.
“We have seen the rise in the competitiveness of teams thanks to the quality of football that has been played in Morocco. There are no more pushovers in the game and as a result, fixtures are becoming highly unpredictable. I am very happy to be witnessing the growth of women’s football on the continent,” Karabo stated.
The win against Simba Queens in the last four meant Sundowns Ladies have now extended their unbeaten run at the continent’s premier women’s tournament to 9 games (W7 D2) and have conceded just once.
The winner-takes-all clash between Sundowns Ladies and Morocco’s AS FAR will take place on Sunday, the 13th of November, at Prince Moulay Abdellah Stadium, Rabat. The kick-off time for the fixture is 21h00 (SAST).
Wishing our Ladies all the best!!!