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Football | Nedbank Cup

Craig Rosslee © Gallo Images

AmaZulu to battle Tembu Royals

AmaZulu will look to show their superiority when they welcome Tembu Royals in their Nedbank Cup Last 32 clash at the King Zwelithini Stadium on Wednesday night, kick-off at 7:30pm.

While the Eastern Cape SAFA Second Division side are making their first appearance in this prestigious tournament, Usuthu, on the other hand, have been close to getting their hands on the cup.

In 2010 AmaZulu reached the final of the same competition, while they were eliminated from the semifinal by eventual winners SuperSport United last season.

Craig Rosslee’s side had a difficult start to the season, but seem to be finding their way since the long break and go into this game on a three-match unbeaten streak with their latest match against SuperSport United ending in a 0-0 draw.

“We had a midweek game against SuperSport and we were fortunate enough not to play this past weekend so the players had a bit of rest,” said Rosslee.

“I’m looking forward to bringing in the players who have been on the fringes, on the bench, to give them good game time.”

The former Ajax Cape Town coach admitted that their opponents know more about his side than they do about them, but was adamant that they would be well-prepared for Wednesday’s encounter.

“We know they have one or two ex-PSL players in their side and we have a report from someone who went to watch their last league game and we’ll analyse them in more detail,” he said.

“From a technical point of view we are ready and our mental approach is not to underestimate Tembu Royals because we’ve already seen enough upsets in competition and that’s exactly what cup football is about.

“We know it’s a home game but we cannot be complacent, we have to respect each and every game and each and every opponent.”

Meanwhile, Royals coach Lwandile Magula says his troops will go into this game high in confidence as they look to cause another upset by eliminating a side from the elite league.

“It’s such a big game and all the players know it,” said Magula. “They have prepared very well, we had a league game on the weekend, which we won 2-1 and there is plenty of confidence we can take out from there.

“So the boys are motivated, motivated because they realise where we are and where we can go to. Anything is possible.

“We can take the example of some of the weekend games where smaller clubs won against the big guns.

“We have that in mind that possibilities are endless, so we’re ready both physically and mentally for this game.

“Our tactical work has been very good and we’ve watched AmaZulu playing and we know their strengths and weaknesses. We are working on those things.”

AmaZulu will be without leading goal scorer Ayanda Dlamini, who will be serving suspension, while defender Marc Van Heerden and midfielder Nyiko Tshabangu are expected to pass late fitness tests after recovering from their respective knocks.


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