The Brazilians have not enjoyed ideal preparations for what promises to be a tough encounter against a rejuvenated AmaZulu side in Tshwane on Sunday
Mokwena was referring mainly to the international break, with Sundowns having seen a large number of their players away on duty, not only for South Africa but also for some other countries across the continent.
This has added a challenge to the coaches, who are looking to keep Sundowns’ positive start to the season going – Masandawana are currently top of the league standings with seven points from their three matches.
“It’s been a good week, but a bit of a complicated week, in the sense that we’ve had time on the pitch, and time is very valuable when you’re a football team,” Mokwena told the media, as quoted by Idiskitimes.
“You want to work on certain schemes, you want to improve certain aspects of your game, and you can only do that when you have time on the pitch. And we’ve tried to exhaust that time as best as we can.”
Included the problems being faced are some niggling injury issues, as well as the challenge of preparing tactically without all of the players being present.
“We’ve had a couple of challenges, of course, because we are a big club, we have a lot of internationals, and then we’ve had a few injury concerns,” Mokwena elaborated.
“So we haven’t had everybody back to work on these things, because when you want to work on tactical schemes, you need players available on the pitch to be able to improve these things, so that has been a little bit of a challenge, but we’re not complaining, we’ve worked really hard.”
The game against AmaZulu takes place at the Loftus Stadium on Sunday. And with Usuthu rejuvenated by new ownership and a raft of big-name signings, Sundowns are expecting an especially tough encounter.
“They come into this match with a lot of confidence, because they beat Black Leopards 2-0, and they beat Black Leopards really, really convincingly, with a very dominant and a very strong performance,” Mokwena pointed out.
“And they also coming into the game with a lot of good feelings in and around their space, because they’ve recruited well, they’ve signed some very good players, and qualitatively they’ve got a lot to offer, and we should expect a very competitive AmaZulu this season.”