USM Alger bank on experience

HARARE - USM Alger (USMA) coach Paul Put is confident their vast knowledge of how to negotiate their way around the continent will be instrumental in today’s African Champions League match against CAPS United.

Founded in 1937, the Reds and Blacks have been perennial contenders in Caf inter-club competitions with their best finish coming in 2015 when they reached the final of the African Champions League.

Put’s side can take one step towards the knockout stages of the competition if they can get maximum points against Makepekepe at the National Sports Stadium this afternoon.

USMA already have three points after their 3-0 victory over Al-Ahli Tripoli in their first game in Group B two weeks ago.

“We know it will be a tough game but I think we have enough experience of playing in Africa, when you are playing an away game, it’s always difficult so we have to concentrate a lot on this game,” Put said.

Put, who led the Stallions of Burkina Faso to the final of the African Nations Cup in 2015, is worried with the pace of the Makepekepe attackers and has warned his players to be cautious. 

“I also appreciate CAPS United a lot because I have seen them playing, they have a very good team,” the Belgian national said.

“They have a lot of speed so when you are playing an away game you know you will be playing under a lot of pressure. There are a lot of things that you have to keep in mind to face this game. So I will ask my players to concentrate throughout the whole game.”

The Red and Blacks arrived in Harare early Monday morning in order to have adequate time to recover from the long flight from Algiers.   

“We had to come a bit early to have enough recuperation time so we have no excuses ahead of this game and we have to do our level best,” Put said.

“It’s not easy to play against CAPS but we will try to concentrate to bring honour to the country and to our team. We have prepared for this game and we know what we need to do and I respect CAPS United because they have a lot of quality.”

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