Erwin Saavedra Mamelodi Sundowns

Mamelodi Sundowns co-coach Rhulani Mokwena says Bolivian midfielder Erwin Saavedra remains unavailable for selection due to injury. Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

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Sundowns could receive a timely boost ahead of the Caf Champions League clash against Al Ahly, with Erwin Saavedra nearly over an injury.

Erwin Saavedra Mamelodi Sundowns

Mamelodi Sundowns co-coach Rhulani Mokwena says Bolivian midfielder Erwin Saavedra remains unavailable for selection due to injury. Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

Saavedra recently received a warm welcome as he touched down in South Africa, having linked up with Sundowns on a multi-million rand deal (estimated to be around R12.25 million).

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The Bolivian international, who starred at the Copa America, will add further star power to a Sundowns team that has already opened up a virtually unassailable lead in the DStv Premiership.

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Saavedra made a short debut in the CAF Champions League as Sundowns clinched a 1-0 win in their over Al Hilal Omdurman, but he had to be taken off during the first half against Al Merrikh due to an injury, and he has been unavailable since then.

However, after missing the first match against Al Ahly in Cairo, as well as the battles with TS Galaxy and Maritzburg United in the DStv Premiership, Saavedra is now back in training.

“On Saavedra, I cannot confirm now, but he is back in training and we are hopeful he will make it,” Mamelodi Sundowns co-coach Manqoba commented ahead of this weekend’s re-match with Sundowns, as quoted by Soccer Laduma. “It still depends on how he does in the next two days.”

Previously, Mngqithi had explained how they hoped to integrate Saavedra into the Sundowns team

“Obviously he’s very fit because he has been playing in South America and he’s done very well for his team. He was always in the team and performed a lot of minutes, so in terms of his physical fitness we had no doubt.

“We had a little bit of a doubt in terms of his traveling, because his traveling took about two days because there was a problem with flight to flight and it’s always a little bit of a challenge with transit periods. That’s why we were a little bit worried and didn’t give him more minutes.

“But we do believe in the very near future he’ll be able to be in the starting XI and to be able to help the team but we do not want to rush him.”

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