Former teammates lock horns
Mamelodi Sundowns and SuperSport United will clash in yet another Tshwane Derby this Saturday night when the two capital city sides meet in the semifinals of the Telkom Knockout at the Peter Mokaba Stadium, kick-off at 8:15pm (CAT, GMP +2) live on SS HD4, SS4 and live streaming on supersport.com.
The Brazilians and Matsatsantsa played to a dull goalless draw already this season when they met at the Lucas Moripe Stadium in Atteridgeville for an Absa Premiership match.
Nonetheless, this will feel as a revenge match for the Brazilians who lost to their city rivals the last time these two teams engaged in a Cup match. It was a 2-0 victory for United in the Nedbank Cup last season.
Both teams have a host of former players and no love will be lost when they lock horns in this cup competition.
Players who are currently on the books of each team that have represented both clubs include Denis Onyango, Calvin Marlin, Tebogo Langerman, Elias Pelembe, Hlompho Kekana, Teko Modise, Anthony Laffor and Katlego Mphela being former United players at ‘Downs. And Innocent Mdledle, Franklin Cale, Sibusiso Zuma and Mabhudi Khenyeza are have represented ‘Downs before.
After drawing SuperSport United in the semifinals of this Cup, Sundowns winger Anthony Laffor is not disturbed by having to face the team he left just under a year ago.
Laffor spent a couple of seasons at Matsatsantsa under the tutelage of coach Gavin Hunt before pursuing a big money move to cross town neighbours ‘Downs in the last January transfer window.
“We need to go there to SuperSport and get a result because the only thing at the back of our minds should be getting to the final,” said Laffor.
“Besides me being with SuperSport before, they have always been a good team. For me they are a past chapter in my life and I fully want to concentrate on Sundowns because it is a club that I love and cherish.
“I care less about people saying that it is my former club because if I get an opportunity to beat them, the prise will be playing in a Cup final.”
Laffor’s thoughts were also echoed by Cale who is a former player of ‘Downs but sees no personal affection in the clash.
The winger shed tears earlier this season after his side were beaten finalists in the MTN8 and wants to go one step better in this competition. Cale believed United would be in for a tough encounter against their bitter rivals.
“I actually didn't expect it (to be drawn against Sundowns) but I am quite happy," said Cale.
"It's not going to be easy, it will be a tough game, because it's a derby, but I'm actually excited because I love playing against them.
"It's my former team and you always want to do well against your former team."
"We played Sundowns in the Nedbank Cup final this year and it is going to be an awesome game."
The winner of this match will either meet Free State Stars or Bloemfontein Celtic in the final.