Al Ahly coach Pitso Mosimane is hoping the club’s vociferous fans can be allowed into the stadium to cheer the team on Saturday when they host Tunisia giants Esperance in a Caf Champions League semi-final reverse leg tie.
Ahly returned to Egypt with an all-important 1-0 away win courtesy of a Mohamed Sherif second-half strike and must finish off their North African rivals in Cairo on Saturday to book a spot in the final.
Mosimane believes the presence of the fans could give the necessary boost to his charges.
Away in Tunis, Ahly had to play in a stadium full of marauding fans. In fact, kickoff had to be pushed by an hour due to crowd trouble.
“We will prepare well for the second leg game in Cairo… I hope Ahly’s supporters can attend the game,” Mosimane told the club’s official website.
“I am looking forward to seeing the fans in the stands,” the South African coach added.
Ahly management announced on Sunday that they asked to allow 20,000 supporters to attend the game.
The former Mamelodi Sundowns coach is wary ahead of the return leg. “The games’ history between Ahly and Esperance shows that winning only 1-0 in the first leg means nothing as the qualified team to the final will be decided in the second leg,” Mosimane said.
“We will continue respecting Esperance in the second leg game as they are a big team,” he added.
Ahly are eyeing a second consecutive Champions League title and a record-extending 10th crown.
By Mthokozisi Dube