Brazilians, Birds set for Saturday thriller

Brazilians, Birds set for Saturday thriller
Swallows players warming up

by Graeme Jackson

Friday Jan 22, 2021. 11:00

South Africa’s DStv Premiership will see a top-of-the-table clash for a second weekend in a row, with the meeting of Mamelodi Sundowns and Swallows FC promising to be a thriller on Saturday afternoon.

Last weekend, Sundowns were held 0-0 at Tshwane rivals SuperSport United. They followed that with another stalemate at home to Bloemfontein Celtic this past Tuesday, opening the door for Swallows to claim top spot the following day, but the Birds could only manage a 1-1 draw at home to Chippa United to again pull level with the champions.

“It’s just not looking good when you’re not scoring in two matches in a row being a team like Sundowns, not taking away the fact that their goalkeeper put in some good saves,” said Sundowns co-coach Manqoba Mngqithi.

“We have to go back and work, hopefully in the big one [against Swallows on Saturday] we’ll be able to get the desired results.”

Kaizer Chiefs will look to continue their upturn in form when they play away to Stellenbosch, with the Amakhosi chasing a fourth straight league win. Youngster Happy Mashiane has scored in successive games for the Soweto giants and earned the praise of coach Gavin Hunt.

“He’s got huge ability and a good future ahead of him,” said the Chiefs boss, who added: “Sometimes we’re trying to score with every pass.

“We’re trying to go forward at every moment. We need to get a little bit of balance first. But those things take time. It doesn’t happen overnight.

“I’ve also got to adapt to them. But we’ve got a good bunch. The mentality is getting better. The mentality was fantastic last year and we need to try and get that back.”

Elsewhere, Orlando Pirates will look to come out of a funk which has seen them claim just one win from their last five league outings when they face hosts Maritzburg United, while Golden Arrows will put their unbeaten status on the line with a tough match away to Cape Town City.

Black Leopards and Chippa United will meet for a crunch match at the bottom of the log, Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila desperately need a positive result at home to SuperSport United, and Baroka FC will chase back-to-back wins when they host AmaZulu.

Bloemfontein Celtic’s scheduled fixture with TS Galaxy has been postponed due to the former completing their CAF Confederation Cup tie against Nigeria’s Rivers United.

DStv Premiership weekend fixtures

Saturday 23 January

15:00: Mamelodi Sundowns v Swallows FC

15:30: Black Leopards v Chippa United

17:00: Baroka FC v AmaZulu

17:00: Stellenbosch FC v Kaizer Chiefs

17:00: Maritzburg United v Orlando Pirates

Sunday 24 January

15:30: Tshakhuma TM v SuperSport United

15:30: Cape Town City v Golden Arrows

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