Absa Premiership

Pirates will secure a top 8 spot, says Matlaba

2017-05-09 12:20
Thabo Matlaba (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Thabo Matlaba is optimistic that Orlando Pirates still have what it takes to end their Premiership season in the top-eight despite two recent consecutive defeats.

A 1-0 defeat to Bidvest Wits and 2-0 loss against Mamelodi Sundowns saw the Buccaneers drop from eighth to 10th position on the Premiership table with 31 points from 27 matches.

With three remaining league matches against Bloemfontein Celtic, Ajax Cape Town and Golden Arrows, it remains to be seen if Bucs will be able to secure enough points to see them finish in the top-eight and qualify for next season's lucrative MTN 8 Cup.

"Honestly, we are not feeling well as the team's players to have lost two crucial games in a row, and I feel sorry for our die-hard supporters who have been disappointed by the team's defeats," Matlaba said as quoted by Vodacom Soccer.

"But we still have three league games to play with nine points to fight for, and I strongly believe that we still have what it takes to secure a top-eight finish come the end of the season." 

The Buccaneers will lock horns withCeltic at Dr Molemela Stadium in Bloemfontein on Wednesday in a crucial Absa Premiership encounter.

Siwelele beat the Sowetan side 2-1 in the league's first round tie, while the Buccaneers reaped revenge with a same scoreline in their Nedbank Cup quarter-final clash.

"Yes, we are left with three tough games, but we have no choice but to come out with vital points in these games," added the 29-year-old.

"We are expecting a tough game from Celtic. They beat us in the first round, and we beat them in the Nedbank Cup, so we expect a tough game from them."

Kick off is at 19:30.


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Tuesday, 03 April 2018
Wits v Maritzburg United, Bidvest Stadium 19:30
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Mamelodi Sundowns v Chippa United, Loftus Versfeld Stadium 19:30
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The 2017/18 Absa Premiership 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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