SuperSport Utd hope to sink Pirates
SuperSport United will host Orlando Pirates at the Peter Mokaba Stadium on Sunday afternoon in a first leg MTN8 semifinal, kick-off at 3pm CAT (SA, GMT+2). Live on SS4 and SS HD4
A late 2-1 win over Golden Arrows in the opening Absa Premiership match and a narrow 1-0 win over Bloemfontein Celtic have seen Augusto Palacios’ men failing to start their title defence in the most convincing of fashions.
“After an intensive pre-season training, our readiness was tested in the past three weeks as we were engaged in some serious pre-season games, as well as in the official season opening games,” explains captain Lucky Lekgwathi.
“So far we did very well despite having not reached our maximum potential as the entire squad continues to work towards gaining full match fitness.
“Playing the way we did against Golden Arrows and Bloemfontein Celtic gave us a wider perspective on how ready we are to defend our titles.
“I must say that those matches were the most crucial ones we played so far, as wining (those games) set the right tone for the remaining games of the season.”
But despite the double-treble winners having yet to reach their peak form they showed at the end of last season, the skipper admits he and his teammates are well aware of what needs to be done and has called upon the fans for their next MTN8 challenge.
“I want tell our followers that we are aware of the amount of work we still need to do,” continued Lekgwathi.
“Things like scoring more goals and conceding less, is something we are taking very serious this season.
“I call on the entire Bucs family to follow us this coming weekend to Polokwane, as we take on SuperSport United in the MTN8 (first leg) semifinal.”
Cup success came about for the Matsatsantsa in last season’s Telkom Knockout Competition and they have once again earmarked silverware for this year.
“The club made it clear that they wanted some silverware this year and we hope we can bring it,” said George Maluleka.
“Pirates will obviously be a threat because they are defending Champions, but I don’t think we should focus too much on them but more on ourselves and on what we have to do to get the result.
“I believe we have enough quality in the squad to get the result.”
Having mastered the art of winning the tournament for two consecutive years, Maluleka believes that the Buccaneers pose a threat in every area on the field and he believes first leg home advantage will help his team.
“Pirates have good players from their starting line-up all the way through to the bench,” added the midfielder.
“Benni [McCarthy] has been there for long and he is always a threat. [Andile] Jali forms a great partnership in the midfield and they all work well.
“Playing the first leg at home is an advantage because I believe if we get the outcome we need in the first leg, we can take the game to Pirates at their home and they will be under pressure.”