Al Ahly coach Pitso Mosimane wishes to avoid Chelsea in the earlier rounds of the 2021 Fifa Club World Cup as he is keen to meet the Premier League giants in the final.
The Cairo giants will be returning to the global club football competition in December this year after being crowned African champions for the 10th time.
Chelsea will represent Europe at this year's edition of the Club World Cup while Auckland City from New Zealand will be carrying the Oceania Football Confederation’s flag.
Participants from Conmebol, Asian Football Confederation and Concacaf are yet to be confirmed.
“I am hoping to meet a Japanese team in the first game. Hopefully, we avoid Chelsea. Then we get a South or Central American team and Chelsea in the final,” said Mosimane as per Sowetan Live.
With Japan having surrendered their hosting rights of the tournament due to Covid-19 restrictions, South Africa has raised its hand to stage the competition.
If Fifa approves South Africa’s interest, that is likely to see Premier Soccer League Mamelodi Sundowns automatically qualifying for the Club World Cup to take up the slot reserved for winners of the hosts' national league.
In the event Mosimane’s dream comes true to meet Chelsea in the final, it would be a perfect fixture for him to take place in his home country.
Also, if Mosimane lasts as Al Ahly coach until December, it would be his third appearance at the Fifa Club World Cup.
He first went there with Mamelodi Sundowns in 2016, before participating earlier this year where he led Al Ahly to a bronze medal.
At that edition, Al Ahly met then European champions Bayern Munich in the semi-finals and lost 2-0.
Mosimane has admitted how he becomes nervous before every match.
“I get nervous before every game, even in the friendly,” Mosimane added
“It is just anxiety to know how it is going to come up and who is going to score, what kind of goal are we going to score, can we score a goal that we worked on? So, yes, I do get nervous. I don’t think there is a coach who doesn’t get nervous before the game.
“Otherwise it means you know that you are going to win. All the games that I am involved in the Premier League in SA or here in Egypt, you are not sure if you are going to win.”