Absa Premiership

AmaZulu prepare for Tuks

2014-12-01 13:09
Steve Barker (Gallo Images)
Cape Town - AmaZulu could be without no fewer than five first-team regulars when they face University of Pretoria in a Premiership encounter at the Princess Magogo Stadium in KwaMashu on Tuesday.

Captain Carlington Nyadombo, Marc van Heerden, John Arwuah and Ayanda Dlamini are all ruled out for the league's bottom club, while Nhlanhla Shabalala is rated as 50-50 in what will be new head coach Steve Barker's first in charge, against his former employers.

The new Usuthu tactician, who was named Craig Rosslee's successor last month, admits there will undoubtedly be emotions attached to the encounter, although he insists he will do everything in his power to put those personal feelings aside.

"I must say to have been at Tuks for as long as I was, there obviously will be some emotions," Barker said. "It's never easy playing against old friends and players that worked so hard for me for many years.

"But for those 90 minutes, the emotions have to be put aside. We need to get the job done."

Usuthu are still searching for a first win of the season, having drawn four and lost seven of their opening 11 top-flight matches, and the 46-year-old Barker is determined to hit the ground running.

He added: "It's a crunch period for the club and we have to make sure we start winning. The next four weeks or so are possibly the biggest in AmaZulu's history and hopefully we can start well on Tuesday."

Tuks, who are now coached by Barker's ex-assistants Sammy Troughton and Seloatse Mosala, have no injuries to report.

The 12th-placed capital club, who themselves have managed just three wins this term, are boosted by the return of captain Tebogo Monyai, who missed Barker's final match in charge - the 3-2 win over Moroka Swallows - through suspension.

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