The Red Devils are on track to reach the competition’s final yet again after defeating the Blood and Gold on Saturday
Al Ahly coach Pitso Mosimane isn’t getting carried away after his side defeated Esperance 1-0 in Saturday’s Caf Champions League first-leg, semi-final clash.
Mohamed Sherif’s 67th-minute goal handed the Red Devils a crucial away victory at the Stade Olympique de Rades.
The Egyptian Premier League side need just a draw against Moine Chaabani’s men in the second leg to stand a chance of claiming a tenth African title.
While acknowledging that his players gave their best against the Tunisians, the South African insisted the last-four showdown was far from decided.
“Our players were able to deal well with the game. They gave everything they had and therefore we were able to achieve a positive result,” Mosimane told Al Ahly’s official website.
“However, I made sure to tell the players that we have still not qualified yet to the final.
“Al Ahly and Esperance have a long history of games which prove that winning the first leg doesn’t mean that you’ll qualify to the final.
“We still have a game to play in Cairo and that is what captain Mahmoud El Khatib, Al Ahly’s president, said to the players after the game.
“Moreover, we respect Esperance and their head coach, as they are a big team in Africa.”
The former Mamelodi Sundowns tactician had earlier stated Al Ahly did not want to make excuses despite the pre-match drama that clouded their fixture versus Esperance in Rades.
His team had to abandon their pre-match warm-up as the police reacted with ‘gas bombs’ against the hosts’ fans.
Subsequently, the game was delayed for an hour due to a clash between the authorities and the fans.
“We are dealing with all circumstances. Against Al-Hilal last season, the atmosphere was more difficult because the fans of the Sudanese team stormed the field,” he said as per Kingfut
“We don’t have any problem dealing with such situations.
“The difficulty was that the team ate their last meal three hours before the match, and after it was postponed for an hour, the team did not eat for four hours, and because of this, we lacked energy in the last minutes of the second half.
“We didn’t want to make excuses. We had to be very focused during the match, and I’m not saying that because we won.”