A big derby awaits Mamelodi Sundowns on their return to PSL action as they square off against Tshwane rivals Supersport United at Lucas Moripe Stadium in Atteridgeville on Wednesday night.
The Brazilians have lost some considerable ground in their title defence due to their involvement in the Caf Champions League, and will be desperate to chip away at Orlando Pirates’ six-point lead at the top of the table.
They resume their title charge with what’s perhaps their toughest remaining league fixture on paper, with the run-in to the end of the season only consisting of teams in the bottom half of the table.
With five matches left to play, Matsatsansa are also within a mathematical shot of the title, as they are currently sixth on the log – ten points behind Pirates.
After dropping points in their last two games, which both ended in stalemates, Kaitano Tembo’s men will want to revive their title challenge by claiming all three points against their city rivals.
They have – in their ranks – one man who will have the inside track on their opponents in George Lebese, who is on loan from Sundowns, and may just want to prove a point should he be given a run on Wednesday.
The 30-year-old has only five appearances in all competition under his belt – all coming in blue rather than yellow. Tembo has cautioned him against putting himself under pressure by going out to prove himself to his mother club.
“I am happy with the way he (Lebese) played against Polokwane City. He played well and I hope, if he gets an opportunity to play on Wednesday, that he plays the same way he plays on Sunday,” the coach told reporters.
“But it’s not about him proving a point, but about him going out there and playing. Not putting himself under pressure, because when you start putting yourself under pressure, you start making mistakes and we don’t want him to do that. We want him to relax and play his normal game.”
Kaitano Tembo, Supersport United coach
Mamelodi Sundowns vs Supersport United: Head-to-head
Last five league matches.
Supersport United 1-2 Mamelodi Sundowns
Mamelodi Sundowns 1-1 Supersport United
Supersport United 0-2 Mamelodi Sundowns
Supersport United 0-1 Mamelodi Sundowns
Mamelodi Sundowns 5-0 Supersport United
Kick-off time and where to watch
Date: Wednesday, 17 April
Kick-off time: 19:30 (SAST)
Venue: Lucas Moripe Stadium
TV and live stream: Supersport 4