Santos looking to eliminate Thanda
Current PSL side Santos will host Kwa-Zulu Natal outfit Thanda Royal Zulu at the Athlone Stadium on Saturday evening in the fourth National First Division relegation/promotion mini-league match, kick-off at 20h15.
Santos head into this match at the summit of the standings with four points from their two matches played so far whilst Thanda have one point from their two matches.
The other side in this three team mini-league, Chippa United, have two points from their two outings.
Half of this play-off mini-league has already been played and Santos looks like clear cut favourites to win it and remain in the Premier Soccer League.
The People’s Team are the only side to register a victory in this competition after their 1-0 victory over their weekend foes in the reverse fixture of this tie in Kwa-Zulu Natal.
Maart Nooij’s side are hoping to use their experience in the elite to overpower their inexperienced and young opponents.
Another potential distraction for Santos has been the media speculation linking some of the club’s top players to other clubs in the PSL.
Santos drew their last encounter which was against local side Chippa United 0-0 at Athlone Stadium on Wednesday night and they will be left wondering how different the situation would have been had they been more clinical in front of goal.
Thanda have been out of top flight football for nearly five years and will be in desperate need for a victory to revive their promotion bid.
Neil Tovey’s men were on the receiving end of a 1-0 defeat to the same opponents in their opening match before drawing with Chippa United in Cape Town last weekend.
A defeat for the Amabhubesi will certainly see them eliminated from the competition whilst for Santos a win will see them just needing a point from their last match against which will be a derby encounter against Chippa United to reaffirm their PSL status.
A defeat for Thanda will be good news for Cape Town natives as it will mean that they will still be guaranteed two teams in the PSL alongside Ajax Cape Town.
If Thanda win the play-offs they might retain Kwa-Zulu Natal’s current number of three teams in the PSL with Maritzburg United looking at Port Elizabeth as a potential future home base.