Maritzburg welcome Stars for Friday night clash

Maritzburg welcome Stars for Friday night clash
Deolin Mekoa of Maritzburg Utd during the Absa Premiership 2017/18 game between Maritzburg United and Kaizer Chiefs at Harry Gwala Stadium, Pietermaritzburg on 20 September 2017 © BackpagePix

by Graeme Jackson

Friday Feb 23, 2018. 08:56

Maritzburg United will target another Friday night Absa Premiership win when they host Platinum Stars at Harry Gwala Stadium on 23 February 2018, kick-off at 20h00.

Maritzburg claimed their eighth league win of the season when they defeated provincial rivals AmaZulu 2-0 on February 16, thanks to goals from Bandile Shandu and Siphesihle Ndlovu. It was just a second win from their last five league matches.

The Team of Choice has claimed 15 points from 10 home matches this season. Their last three turns as hosts have brought a 1-0 loss to SuperSport United, 1-1 draw with Chippa United and the above-mentioned victory over AmaZulu.

Stars played to a second successive draw when they were held 0-0 at home by SuperSport United on February 20. The Rustenburg side has gone six league matches without a win, picking up just two points from a possible 18 in the sequence.

Dikwena have claimed just 11 points from as many away matches this season, with their last game on the road a thrilling 3-3 draw at Chippa United earlier this month.

In head-to-head terms, Stars and Maritzburg have met in 23 league matches since 2005/06. The Rustenburg-based side has claimed 10 wins compared to six for their Pietermaritzburg counterparts, while seven matches have been drawn. The Team of Choice has won just three of their 11 home matches in the rivalry, suffering five defeats in the process.

When the teams met earlier this season, Maritzburg claimed a 2-0 win in Rustenburg thanks to late goals from Deolin Mekoa and Lebohang Maboe. It extended United’s unbeaten run against Stars to seven league games.

Maritzburg’s line-up from their 2-0 win over AmaZulu on February 16: Ofori, Sanoka, Xulu, Fransman, Thlone (Twala 46’), Ndlovu, Makaringe, Shandu, Maboe (Onyango 78’), Mekoa, Fileccia (Mokate 80’).

Stars’ line-up from their 0-0 draw with SuperSport on February 20: Visser, Mthethwa, Sithole, Gcaba, Mere, Baloyi, Mekoa, Tshabangu (Mpeta 75’), Norodien, Koapeng (Matlakala 86’), Phiri Jr (Ng’ambi 57’).

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