Johannesburg - Mamelodi Sundowns welcome Bloemfontein Celtic to Pilditch Stadium on Saturday in a must win game for both sides as they look to cement a top eight spot in the Absa Premiership.
Kick-off is at 20:15.
Bloemfontein Celtic travel to Tshwane on the back of a hard fought 1-0 win over Golden Arrows in their last encounter. The Free State side have gradually slipped down the table in recent weeks and will be keen on grabbing consecutive victories when they face a wounded Brazilians side.
Sundowns have had a disappointing season so far; despite improving under former Bafana Bafana coach Pitso Mosimane the Tshwane side have recorded three draws in their last four matches, recently being held to a goalless draw by an improving AmaZulu side.
Despite Sundowns league position Phunya Sele Sele coach Clinton Larsen expects a tough game on Saturday.
“We are expecting a very tough game on Sunday, Sundowns position on the log is not a true reflection of the quality they possess. Sundowns can turn around and give any team a drubbing on their day so we will have to be up for a tough battle,” said Larsen.
“They also want to be in the top eight, we want to move to the top four, so we are expecting a very hungry Sundowns side.”
The Celtic boss also described his side’s season as being ‘bitter sweet’. Celtic have often dominated sides but were unable to take their chances and as a result Larsen feels his side have dropped points throughout the season in games they could have won.
“Our season so far has been bitter sweet. Bitter because I feel we could be 10 or so points better off. I feel that we could have done better, especially away from home. Sweet because I am happy with the brand of football we have played,” added Larsen.
“We have such a young squad at Celtic and the youngsters have performed very well. It will be a very successful season in Celtic history if we finish in the top five, having already won the Telkom Knockout Cup.”
Mosimane’s troops have failed to fire on all cylinders throughout the season. The Brazilians currently occupy 11th pace on the log, far from where they would have liked to been at this stage of the season.
The former Bafana Bafana coach, though, feels his side will improve by next season and that his side are giving their all to improve the situation they currently find themselves in.
“Look, the boys are trying, we know it is too many draws and it is not good enough, but the energy is there and the passion is there,” said Mosimane.
“The boys are just not sure if they are good enough, I have to keep motivating them, but we will get there.”
The reverse fixture between the two sides ended in in a 1-0 win for the Tshwane side thanks to a Richard Henyekane first half strike.