3 must-watch matches not to be missed this week
JOHANNESBURG - Here are three matches you cannot miss this week:
Telkom Knockout Semi-finals
Golden Arrows v Mamelodi Sundowns, Saturday, 3pm
Before the Fifa International break, the Brazilians were shocked, shocked I tell you, to lose 3-2 to Abafana Bes’thende in the Absa Premiership after a blunder from goalkeeper Denis Onyango.
Be assured, so shocked were they, that Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane will still be seething and looking for a measure of revenge when the two clubs meet in the TKO this weekend.
Mosimane has already begun the psychological warfare, barking last week that the pitch at the Sugar Ray Xulu Stadium - the arena where they lost the week before - "is not suitable for the clash”.
“I don’t know if we can play the game here on this pitch because the drainage is not good I don’t know if the stadium can take the semi-final.”
Mosimane and Co have also recently taken a battering in the Premiership, so pushing for a victory here and then going on to the final, and lifting some silverware, could settle the murmurs of discontent coming out of Chloorkop.
For Arrows, meanwhile, it will be a chance to prove that their victory was no fluke. They have the homeground advantage, and know the conditions well, even if they have at times battled there.
It truly is a David v Goliath encounter.
Kaizer Chiefs v Maritzburg United, Sunday, 3pm
And speaking of David v Goliath match-ups, the second semi-final could be a definition of the term.
Last year, Eric Tinkler’s Team of Choice had to fight for top flight survival, finishing second last, battling through the play-offs to secure their Premier League spot. It is remarkable that they now find themselves in a position to contest for silverware.
Of course, they must now face the juggernaut that is Amakhosi, who have swept aside all before them in the league, leading the standings by a mammoth 10 points as we close in on the December break.
They are no doubt the favourites but never write of the underdog. After all, it’s not the size of a dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog.
Though we love Chiefs here at Independent and wish them nothing of the best, it would be an awesome achievement if Maritzburg pull a fast one and progress to the TKO final, to be hosted in Durban, nogal.
English Premier League
Manchester City v Chelsea, Saturday, 7.30pm
Who wouda thunk that these two giants of English football would be here at this point?
City were, along with Liverpool, the would-be champions this season, while the Blues were going to be struggling with new youngling coach Frank Lampard, rebuilding and youthful due to a transfer ban.
As the first half of the season closes, the Sky Blues have been bruised - they are in fourth spot in the league, nine points behind the leading Reds and last weekend were thumped 3-1 at Anfield, while Chelsea are third due to goal difference.
Yes, a notable trend has developed in our TV pics this week: The Big Guns v the up-and-comers, the Old Heads v Young Turks, the current champion crop v future legends, Davids v Goliaths, and we absolutely love it.