Sundowns look to keep up strong form

Sundowns look to keep up strong form
Percy Tau of Mamelodi Sundowns challenged by Abbubaker Mobara of Orlando Pirates during the Absa Premiership 2017/18 match between Mamelodi Sundowns and Orlando Pirates at Loftus Versveld Stadium, Pretoria South Africa on 13 January 2018 ©Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

by Graeme Jackson

Tuesday Feb 20, 2018. 16:30

Mamelodi Sundowns will look to keep up their strong form in the Absa Premiership when they host Free State Stars at Loftus Versfeld Stadium on 21 February 2018, kick-off at 19h30.

Sundowns claimed their 12th win of the season when they defeated Cape Town City 1-0 away from home on February 2. The Tshwane side has picked up seven points from the last nine up for grabs and kept three successive clean sheets in the process.

The Brazilians have claimed just 12 points from nine home matches this season, though their last game as hosts saw them claim a 3-0 win over Platinum Stars last month.

Stars have also enjoyed a strong run of form in recent weeks. Their 2-0 home win over Baroka FC on February 3 was their sixth victory in the space of nine league matches, a sequence which has brought them 19 points from a possible 27.

Ea Lla Koto have claimed just 11 points from nine away matches this season, though their last two games on the road have brought them a victory at Bidvest Wist at the start of the year and a goalless draw away to Ajax Cape Town at the end of last month.

In head-to-head stats, Stars and Sundowns have met in 56 league matches since 1986. The Tshwane side has claimed 29 wins compared to 10 for their Free State rivals, while 17 matches have ended in draws. The Brazilians have won 17 of 28 home matches in the rivalry, suffering just three defeats in the process.

When the teams met earlier this season, ‘Downs claimed a 2-1 away win in the Free State thanks to a brace of goals from striker Percy Tau. It was the Brazilians’ 10th successive league win over Ea Lla Koto.

Sundowns’ line-up from their 1-0 win over City on February 2: Onyango, Morena, Soumahoro, Nascimento, Langerman, Manyisa, Mabunda, Vilakazi (Zwane 47’), Billiat (Ngoma 77’), Brockie (Madisha 62’), Tau.

Stars’ line-up from their 2-0 win over Baroka on February 3: Sangare, Maswehe, Mobbie, Mahamutsa, Mbhele, Phungwayo, Vilakazi, Tchilimbou, Dlamini (Cosse 75’), Jantjie (Teyise 87’), Mthembu (Anas 90’).

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