Rough CAF Champions League Start for Mamelodi Sundowns as Club Is Forced to Relocate Venue to the North West

Rough CAF Champions League Start for Mamelodi Sundowns as Club Is Forced to Relocate Venue to the North West

Keba Mothoagae
updated at April 12, 2023 at 7:55 PM
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CAF Champions League
  • Mamelodi Sundowns will have to make do with being in unfamiliar surroundings for their opening match in the CAF Champions League against Al-Hilal
  • The Brazilians will trek north westward to Rustenburg's Royal Bafoken Stadium for the fixture on Friday night
  • This comes after CAF ruled that the usual venues that the team used did not meet its regulations

Mamelodi Sundowns will not have home comforts to draw upon when they get their 2022 CAF Champions League campaign started on Friday night.

The club was forced to relocate from Tshwane to Rustenburg's Royal Bafokeng Stadium for their opening match against Sudanese team Al-Hilal. The match could have either taken place at the usual venues like Loftus Versfeld in Tshwane or the Lucas "Masterpieces" Moripe Stadium in Atteridgeville.

caf champions league, mamelodi sundowns, al-hilal, caf, rulani mokwena, lucas moripe stadium, royal bafokeng stadium, soccer city, fnb stadium, rustenburg, north west, loftus versfeld, tshwane
The Lucas "Masterpieces" Moripe Stadium in Atteridgeville. Image source: Lefty Shivambu/Getty Images
Source: Getty Images

According to a report by Soccer Laduma, CAF decided that the possible venues the Brazilians had put forth did not meet its criteria. According to TimesLIVE, the continental governing body has banned most stadiums on the continent from hosting continental club and international matches as they roll out new venue compliance regulations.

Coach Rulani Mokwena said:

"It’s a difficult one, but a bit complicated because CAF inspected all three stadiums that we put forward as our recommended venues. You would know that in the past we have used Loftus, Lucas Moripe and we’ve also used the Tuks Stadium and registered it as an alternative – upon inspection CAF was not entirely happy with all three."
“For various reasons, from lacking the adequate generators, not being satisfied with medical facilities, the dugout and the safety of the chairs that were in different facilities. CAF then proposed that we use FNB Stadium. But the difficult with that is clearly knowing that our archrivals used that venue and in some of the dates we have our home fixtures Kaizer Chiefs would be playing a couple of their home games there.”

Mamelodi Sundowns continues ruthless march towards title with easy win over Chippa United

Goals from Andile Jali and Teboho Mokoena were more than enough to see Mamelodi Sundowns defeat Chippa United 2-0 at Loftus Versfeld in the DStv Premiership.

As reported on Sports Brief, the victory saw Sundowns open the gap at the top of the table between them and Orlando Pirates to a mammoth 17 points with 10 matches to go for the log leaders.

Mathematically, the Brazilians are now 16 points from winning the league title if the Buccaneers were to inconceivably win their remaining 11 matches on the trot.

Keba Mothoagae photo
Keba Mothoagae
Editor- Local Desk
DStv PremiershipSouth Africa