Former Masandawana center-back advises the Buccaneers to win against his former club which leads the league table
Former Mamelodi sunset defender Phelelani Mpangase believes the quality of the Brazilian squad will not be enough and they will be outmatched by Orlando pirates in Saturday’s Premier Soccer League (PSL) confrontation at Loftus Versfeld.
It would be the opening of 2021 and a battle of teams both mentioned as title contenders who have yet to taste defeat in this season’s campaign.
With the Sundowns six-point Pirates, although they played one game less than the leaders, Mpangase is still giving the contest to Josef Zinnbauer and his men.
“Regardless of whether I played for Sundowns, let’s be honest the Pirates are in their prime right now,” Mpangase said. Soccerladuma.
“They are doing very, very well. The intensity at which they play is very high and it is very rare that the teams match their intensity.
“Even though Sundowns has some quality players, I don’t see them equaling the Pirates in terms of intensity and mobility. Yes the Sundowns have a solid team on the pitch and on the bench, but I think the Pirates will take this one because of their form and the way they played.
The Pirates are unbeaten with three wins but their campaign was somewhat canceled out by four draws.
The Soweto Giants are ranked fifth on the table and have managed nine goals in seven games with a strike rate that may not be too impressive against Sundowns’ 16 goals in eight games.
Masandawana also looks better in terms of defense, having conceded five times compared to Pirates, who scored six goals despite having fewer games.
What has dominated discussions over Sundowns this season is their spirited offensive combination of Themba Zwane, Peter Shalulile and Kermit Erasmus, who have combined to contribute 13 of the Downs’ 16 league goals.
Zwane has seven PSL goals in as many matches while the Pirates’ top scorers are Vincent Pule and Tshegofatso Mabasa, who each have two goals.
Zwane and Erasmus rested in the last league of Sundowns and Caf Champions League exits and could come back cooler to pick up where they left off.