Young Africans have history with PSL sides as Sundowns loom

football26 March 2024 10:00| © Mzansi Football
article image
© Gallo Images

Mamelodi Sundowns will head to Tanzania for the first leg of their CAF Champions League quarterfinal on Saturday, where they will meet a Young Africans side determined to give them a tough time.

Yanga, as the home side are known, have some ‘previous’ with South African clubs, including very recently, and have not been overawed.

They defeated Marumo Gallants in the semifinals of the CAF Confederation Cup last season, winning both legs – 2-0 away at home and 2-1 in South Africa.

Sundowns have met Yanga before, in the second round of the Champions League in 2001 and it was also no easy ride. The Brazilians won 3-2 at home and were held 3-3 away, taking the tie 6-5 on aggregate.

Before that, Yanga faced Manning Rangers in the group stages of the Champions League in 1998, with Rangers playing to a 1-1 draw in Dar es Salaam, before recording a thumping 4-0 success at home.

In 1995 Yanga took on Vaal Professionals in the first round of the now defunct African Cup Winners’ Cup and made it through, drawing 2-2 in Gauteng in the first leg before claiming a 2-1 home victory in the second.

But that was not their first visit to South Africa. Yanga met Moroka Swallows in the 1994 CAF Cup and after winning 1-0 at home, lost 2-0 in Soweto.

It means they have played a total of 10 matches against South African clubs, winning three, drawing three and suffering four defeats.

They have certainly not been dominated and with only a 40 per cent loss record, might fancy their chances of an upset, even against the mighty Sundowns.

Aside from their 2001 meeting with Yanga, the Chloorkop side have only met Tanzanian opposition on one other occasion – they faced Tanzania Stars in the first round of the Cup winners’ Cup in 1998.

That was a simpler mission as they won 4-1 at home and 2-0 away.