SuperSport United are set to welcome Orlando Pirates to the Lucas Moripe Stadium in their final DStv Premiership clash on Monday.
The extended PSL season finishes with this clash as the Soweto giants attempt to secure their qualification for next season’s CAF Confederation Cup competition.
Matsatsantsa will come into this fixture looking to return to winning ways after they were forced to endure a 3-1 defeat against Baroka at the Peter Mokaba Stadium following a brace by Bonginkosi Makume and a goal from Evidence Makgopa cancelled out Aubrey Ngoma’s 81st-minute goal.
The Buccaneers are hoping to bounce back from their previous result which saw them play out to a thrilling 2-2 draw after Deon Hotto and Kwame Peprah’s early goals were cancelled out by Thabo Matlaba and Mfundo Thikazi at the Chatsworth Stadium.
United currently occupies ninth place in the league standings with 37 points from 29 matches, seven points behind the Buccaneers, who sit in place sixth on the table with 44 points with one match remaining in the season.
Orlando Pirates co-coach Fadlu Davids says: “We know what we’ve got to do, we’ve got to beat SuperSport 5-0 to be able to get the third place,
“I feel for the players, after starting exactly how we wanted to, high intensity. I really feel for them, they gave their all this evening and were not to be able to kill off the game with the third goal and then of course conceding the two late on.”
SuperSport United coach Andre Arendse adds: “It’s been 16 days or so since our last game in the PSL.
“The challenge between then and now has primarily been finding that balance between checking the fitness levels of our players and integrating ball orientated work and also just the tactical side of our preparations.
“The players have responded ever so well in terms of the focus, in terms of the commitment to this last particular game. To the extent that every single player has certainly put his hand up for a place in the starting XI for the last game, so that’s been fantastic to see from a coaching perspective.
“It’s not easy to ask any player to wait so long to play their next game and combine that with the fact that the season is already done.”
“Its a must win game for us, as it currently stands we are just outside the top eight but the fact that the game is in our own hands certainly eases the pressure.
“At the same time, it increases the focus level that we need against a team like Orlando pirates.”
In head-to-head stats between the two teams, Orlando Pirates have the upper hand over SuperSport United, having won three out of the last five meetings, while United have only won one and with one match ending in a stalemate.
There are no injuries or suspensions in the respective camps as they will both have fully fit squads for the final game of the season.
Player To Watch:
Thamsanqa Gabuza: The SuperSport striker will be looking to end his campaign on a high and finish as the club’s top goalscorer for the season, having already scored seven goals in 27 league appearances for United.
Thembinkosi Lorch: The Pirates attacker has come to life in the closing stages of the campaign and has created six goals for the Buccaneers with two goals and four assists in his last three matches.
SuperSport United Form:
Orlando Pirates Form: