PSL

Stars keen to break losing streak by Sundowns

2017-10-01 06:00
CONFIDENT: Platinum Stars coach Roger De Sá wants to turn the corner for his side. (Supplied)

Johannesburg - Though Platinum Stars have gone six games without a victory, head coach Roger De Sá believes they will break their duck this afternoon.

Stars host Mamelodi Sundowns at Royal Bafokeng Stadium in one of the two league fixtures on Sunday - Bloemfontein Celtic host Bidvest Wits at Dr Petrus Molemela Stadium in the other.

Despite still missing three of his key players, De Sá was confident of a positive result against the Brazilians.

He’s been in charge of three games so far – losing two and drawing one – and said a victory was past due.

Decent side

De Sá said he was happy to have had a full week with the team for the first time since he joined the side.

However, he bemoaned the fact that he was still missing some key players who are out due to injuries. He said Zambian striker Brian Mwila, midfielder Lehlogonolo Masalesa and defender Sphiwe Mnguni were not ready to play.

But he said he would have to make do with who he has.

“It is going to be a tough one because Sundowns are a decent side and are going to be fired up,” said De Sá.

He added that the uncertainty regarding the future of the club was not helping the players.

It has been reported that the club is about to exchange hands, although Stars has denied the claim.

Though they might not admit it openly, getting knocked out of the CAF Champions League could be a blessing in disguise for Sundowns.

The team can finally channel all their efforts towards the league campaign.

League title

Unlike the past season, when they had to play catch-up for the better part of the campaign, this time around they are only three games behind the rest of the teams.

Last year, they went all the way to the final of the CAF Champions League and spent two weeks in Japan at the Fifa Club World Cup.

The catch-up game eventually caught up with them and they surrendered their league title.

After failing to reach the semifinal of the continental tournament, they will now have time to challenge for domestic silverware.

Before long, Sundowns will be on par with other clubs.

First win

This could work in their favour as they no longer have continental competitions to contend with – until March, when they will once again take aim at the Champions League.

By then, the team should have made an impact on the league and cup competitions.

Fortunately for the Brazilians, other clubs are not too far ahead.

If Sundowns win all their catch-up games, they could easily end up on top of the log. But it is easier said than done, and today they will face a side looking for their first win of the season.

Games between these two sides have not been easy to predict as Stars always give Sundowns a tough time.

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Fixtures
Saturday, 21 October 2017
Kaizer Chiefs v Orlando Pirates, FNB Stadium 15:30
Golden Arrows v Polokwane City, Princess Magogo Stadium 15:30
Ajax Cape Town v Bloemfontein Celtic, Athlone Stadium 20:15
Free State Stars v Platinum Stars, Goble Park 20:15
Maritzburg United v SuperSport United, Harry Gwala Stadium 20:15
Mamelodi Sundowns v AmaZulu FC, Lucas Moripe Stadium 20:15
Sunday, 22 October 2017
Baroka FC v Wits, Peter Mokaba Stadium 15:30
Chippa United v Cape Town City FC, Sisa Dukashe Stadium 15:30
Tuesday, 31 October 2017
Bloemfontein Celtic v Maritzburg United, Dr Molemela Stadium 19:30
SuperSport United v Golden Arrows, Mbombela Stadium 19:30
Polokwane City v Kaizer Chiefs, Peter Mokaba Stadium 19:30
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The 2017/18 PSL season is under way. Can Bidvest Wits defend their title? Will Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs or Orlando Pirates emerge victorious? Or will the bookies' favourites, Mamelodi Sundowns, taste success for a record eighth time? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

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