Sundowns out for revenge against Chiefs in Woza Nazo clash
Cape Town - Mamelodi Sundowns will be aiming for revenge when they visit Kaizer Chiefs in the Absa Premiership on Saturday at FNB Stadium.
Kick-off is at 20:15. The Brazilians lead the league with 34 points from 18 matches while the Glamour Boys are in third on 29 points.
It thus appears Chiefs need to win to keep their hopes alive in the title race, whereas 'Downs have lost three of their last five PSL matches.
With that said, this weekend's encounter seems to have all the ingredients of a 'blood and thunder' affair.
Masandawa's two recent losses have come against Polokwane City and Orlando Pirates so far in the new year.
However, they bounced back with wins over Ajax Cape Town and Platinum Stars to consolidate their number one spot on the log table.
Mosimane's men will be aiming to put some breathing space between themselves and the chasing pack as they sit at the top spot with 34 points from 18 matches.
In the first round, the Tshwane giants succumbed to a 2-1 loss against Amakhosi at home and will now be chasing to return the favour.
Looking at the Naturena-based outfit, they are picking up their momentum in as far as the league title race is concerned and will pose a threat to their visitors.
In their previous matches they beat Rise and Shine, Baroka FC as well as bagging a draw against SuperSport United in the new year thus far.
LAST 10 LEAGUE RESULTS
(Under season, result and scorers)
2012/13 Sundowns 0-0 Chiefs
2013/14 Sundowns 0-1 Chiefs - Arendse (og)
2013/14 Chiefs 0-1 Sundowns - Modise
2014/15 Chiefs 1-1 Sundowns - Lebese; Modise
2014/15 Sundowns 0-1 Chiefs - Parker
2015/16 Chiefs 0-0 Sundowns
2015/16 Sundowns 3-1 Chiefs - Castro, Nthethe (pen), Katsande (og); Gordinho
2016/17 Sundowns 2-1 Chiefs - Langerman, Vilakazi; Mphahlele
2016/17 Chiefs 2-1 Sundowns - Parker, Soumahoro (og); Billiat
2017/18 Sundowns 1-2 Chiefs - Zwane (pen); Ngezana, Parker
What the teams are saying…
Mamelodi Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane: "I wish I could play these big games with a fully fit team and compete fairly," said Mosimane. But I can't complain because the same team that lost to Chiefs played well.
"We need to be smart against Chiefs. Not be all over the place, we know how they play. We must also avoid playing into their hands because we are playing away and somebody must attack. I appreciate an open game. I appreciate attack. That's why I'm talking about a 4-4 or 4-3 (scoreline).
"Because that's what I want, but we will respect Chiefs - they have done very well. And I think 'Itu' (Itumeleng Khune)‚ you can rest - maybe (Jeremy) Brockie will not start.
"We didn't bring Brockie to win a game against Chiefs. And we didn't bring Brockie at Mamelodi Sundowns to keep us on top of the log - he found us there.”
Kaizer Chiefs coach Steve Komphela: "It's going to be very interesting. Sundowns are doing well, we are also hitting some form, we are getting goals, we are scoring," said Komphela.
"And this is a big team. One thing people must not forget, this team is big. We do not get surprised by a positive run.
"But we just get angry when it's not coming. So that when we are winning, to us it's normal. The only thing is when we draw, because to us a draw is a loss, then we get a bit edgy. But a win, a win is normal at Chiefs, it is what we get paid for.
"We still have many other matches to play. It's 12 matches to go, the road is still long. We just have to take it one match at a time. But it's important to keep within touching distance and it makes for an interesting match, the next match."
Key players for Kaizer Chiefs
Willard Katsande: The hard tackling midfielder will be the man tasked to police the Sundowns midfielders and stop them from launching their attacks. His battle with the likes of Tiyani Mabunda and Hlompho Kekana is always interesting to watch.
Leonardo Castro: The former Sundowns forward has found a new home in Soweto and will want to prove a thing or two to his former bosses. Having scored on his debut last weekend, his morale is high heading to this one.
Key players for Mamelodi Sundowns
Hlompho Kekana: The Sundowns skipper was benched last weekend against Dikwena and could be available to face Amakhosi to provide steel and leadership. His long accurate passes and ability to direct the game will be key as they want a win.
Themba Zwane: One of the mainstays in the Sundowns starting line-up, Zwane will hope to provide creativity for the visitors. His eye for a defence splitting pass and composure in the box will be a threat to the hosts.