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Aubrey Modiba knows that Mamelodi Sundowns are not untouchable ahead of Baroka clash

Aubrey Modiba of Mamelodi Sundowns during the 2021 MTN8 Final match between Cape Town City and Mamelodi Sundowns on the 30 October 2021 at Moses Mabhida Stadium, Durban Pic Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix

Aubrey Modiba of Mamelodi Sundowns during the 2021 MTN8 Final match between Cape Town City and Mamelodi Sundowns on the 30 October 2021 at Moses Mabhida Stadium, Durban Pic Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix

Published Dec 14, 2021

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Johannesburg - MameIodi Sundowns wing-back Aubrey Modiba is wary of the threat posed by strugglers Baroka FC, saying that the Ga-Mphahlele-based outfit will throw everything at them in their bid to turn around their fortunes in the Premiership today.

At the halfway mark in the league, Sundowns are at the summit of the standings with 37 points thanks to 11 wins and four draws. That is in stark contrast to Baroka, who are at the foot of the table with 10 points.

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The teams head into their sixpointer on the back of contrasting fortunes, Sundowns defeating SuperSport United on Saturday, and Baroka drawing 0-0 with Cape Town City.

But Modiba knows that Sundowns are not untouchables.

“Every team in the league is gunning for the points. They are obviously fighting for them. They haven’t been collecting maximum points but I think they’ll fight hard (for them). We watched their game (against City),” Modiba said.

“We’ve analysed them so that we can be able to match them. I think it’s going to be a difficult match, but we’ll be up to the task.

“They are a balanced team. They work very hard. They’ve changed the coach but he’s very familiar with the team.”

Kgoloko Thobejane’s return as Baroka coach was well received, although he hasn’t quite lived up to expectations so far after four matches.

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He’s racked up two points out of a possible 12. That’s why his job will be cut out for him in Hatfield today against a Sundowns team who are yet to lose in the league.

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But Modiba is aware that they can’t take anything for granted.

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“I think they’ll fight hard. But I think it’s up to us to match them so that we can continue with our unbeaten run and continue to collect the maximum points. Baroka played well against Cape Town City,” he explained.

“They had a few scoring chances. So I think their coaches will be eager to work on their positives and negatives that they encountered in that game. That’s why they’ll be aiming to use the positives against us. It will be an interesting match.”

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Some of the teams in the top flight have been badly affected by the surge in positive cases of Covid19, especially after the detection of the new variant, Omicron. But the Brazilians’ depth has been working for them so far.

They can change playing personnel, while churning out results. Perhaps credit should go to striker Peter Shalulile, who’s leading the Premiership scoring charts with 12 league goals. His most recent contribution was in the win over SuperSport.

As much as the Brazilians’ striking department has been potent, they’ve been solid defensively as well. They’ve conceded only five league goals this term, despite the frequent change of goalkeepers due to injury and medical reasons.

@MihlaliBaleka

IOL Sport

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