Sundowns travel to a wounded Amakhosi side
Mamelodi Sundowns' trip to Kaizer Chiefs on Saturday night promises to be one of the clashes of the season so far in the DSTV Premiership.
A clash that many also describe as a title decider match while on the opposite end this is the clash that hosts Kaizer Chiefs will look to use in restoring some pride for the team.
Coming to this clash at the back of the Tshwane Derby success, Sundowns coach Rhulani Mokwena has undoubtedly built a vibrant, attacking team and one that has scored 33 goals in 17 DSTV Premiership matches.
With just 6 goals conceded in this campaign so far, Sundowns' defence will be another hard shell to crack for Amakhosi who have just merely scored 18 goals in the campaign so far.
Speaking ahead of the match, Sundowns' coach Rhulani Mokwena has stated that they will approach the clash against Chiefs with caution.
"Kaizer Chiefs will always be a big club historically and it needs to be given a lot of respect, they are extremely well organized, very clear in their patterns of play, very good players with a very good technical team," Mokwena said.
Although that is case Mokwena's charges will want to do the double over a wounded Amakhosi side after humbling Chiefs 4-0 last year August in the reverse fixture.
Depending on how Mokwena and his technical team view the opponent one thing is certain Sundowns will rely on the ever present Ronwen Williams between the sticks, Williams has been a rock at the back along with his well organized defence.
Williams was an integral part of that triumph in August last year and even saved a Khama Billiat penalty in the second half, the 31 year old Bafana Bafana international has 12 clean sheets since arriving at Sundowns in the beginning of the season.
Another key prospect is undoubtedly the man that has been described as the heartbeat of Mamelodi Sundowns Themba Zwane, Zwane has not only been consistent for Sundowns but he has also been a big player for such an encounter with Amakhosi.
Mshishi has scored three goals and provided two assists against Kaizer Chiefs in the previous encounters and with his ability to create chances and also influence play, he will surely be the catalyst Sundowns need to overcome Chiefs again.
Meanwhile it is not looking so good at Naturena with the Glamour Boys, Chiefs' 4-0 drubbing at the hands of AmaZulu last weekend was their 6th defeat in 16 matches and a second 4-0 loss this season.
Inconsistency is the right word to use when we reflect on the performance Chiefs has had this season, Amakhosi are yet to register a win in 2023 and that has inconsistency written all over it because they ended the year 2022 year on a high note defeating Golden Arrows 2-0.
A victory in the Soweto Derby before the Qatar World Cup break came at the back of a 2-2 draw at TS Galaxy and just before that Amakhosi had lost 2-1 to Chippa United.
Despite the inconsistency coach Arthur Zwane still believes the Glamour Boys are building and will bounce back.
"To be honest I am not worried about the inconsistency, we have a plan as a club - a plan that needs to be executed, we have something to do and we will get there," Zwane said.
The 49 year old furthermore likened the situation Chiefs is in to Arsenal, "Look at Arsenal, why are they doing well now? Because they had so much patience and belief in Mikel Arteta. They gave him(Arteta) the opportunity and space to try and work things out and you can see the results now"
10111 as he was affectionately known to the Amakhosi faithful during his playing days has once again came out to the defence of the youngsters.
"I have honestly seen a lot of positive things from the guys that come from the development side, at some point you will have to pay the price when you play the youngsters in terms of the mistakes that you commit." Zwane added.
"Obviously the game is the teacher and most of them are improving. The more they play, the more they gain experience." Chiefs will welcome back Keegan Dolly from suspension and Khama Billiat from injury.
Kick-off is at 20:00 CAT at the FNB Stadium.