Matsatsantsa are making their maiden appearance in the last four of the competition and with their crosstown neighbours Mamelodi Sundowns bowing out and surrendering their CAF Champions League title, it is now up to club from the nation’s capital to carry the hopes of the 56 Million South Africans who will be rallying behind them on Saturday.
Speaking to CAFOnline on Wednesday, Phala said the boys were in high spirits following their dramatic comeback to seal a place in the last four of the competition.
“There is a great amount of positive energy in the camp and it has even rubbed off onto the technical staff. We made a great comeback playing away and that is a major confidence booster for us as a team” said Phala.
The 31-year-old attacker believes there is a lot of work that needs to be done should they go all the way and lift the title which has never been won by a South African club before.
“We are coming up against the best four teams that remain in the competition so it will be even tougher. We need to ensure that we keep a clean sheet at home because that is very important in continental competitions. Not conceding is the ideal situation but going further and winning at home will be a major boost for us”
Having represented Kaizer Chiefs, Mamelodi Sundowns and Bafana Bafana in the 2013 and 2015 Africa Cup of Nations, Phala is yet to lift a continental title and says this would be the perfect crowning to his football career.
The skilful winger also spoke highly of their new man on the helm, Eric Tinkler who guided his former club to the finals of the same competition three years ago.
“His experience is really helpful to us and the club. He knows this competition and knows what is required to reach the finals. He unfortunately did not go all the way last time but this year could be a different story and we hope that his luck will also rub off on us as a team” Phala said.
Meanwhile, the club has gone on an aggressive marketing drive to ensure that the Lucas Moripe Stadium is painted blue with the aim of creating a hostile environment for the visiting Tunisians.