CAPE TOWN – City will be chasing a fifth straight victory over SuperSport United when the two teams meet in an Absa Premiership clash at the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit tomorrow (3pm kick-off - live on SuperSport).
City did the league double over Matsatsantsa last season, beat them in the MTN8 final, and knocked them out of the Nedbank Cup.
As for current league form, City saw their three-game unbeaten run (one win, two draws) end last time out in a 2-1 home defeat to unbeaten log leaders Kaizer Chiefs, the result dropping Benni McCarthy’s boys from sixth to eighth on the table on five points.
United, after starting their campaign with a 2-0 away loss to champions Mamelodi Sundowns, won two of their next three starts which included a 3-0 win over visiting Orlando Pirates. They are fourth on the log on seven points, three adrift of Chiefs.
The two-week Fifa international window came at the right time for McCarthy. A day after watching his side throw away points against Chiefs, he flew to Scotland to be with his family, but before he left he said he would return to his old way in dealing with his players, and that he did on Monday. He let them have it in no uncertain terms.
McCarthy is big on discipline but also encourages his charges to be the best they can. When his players play like he knows they can, no one sings their praises more than him. The first-half performance at home to Amakhosi is what the coach wants to see for the full 90 minutes. If his squad can achieve that City can go close to winning a maiden title.
“It was frustrating to watch that game against Chiefs,” said McCarthy. “The first half was an absolute joy to see how my boys performed, if only we could have made use of our chances, the game would have been sealed at half-time.
“We will look to start in the same fashion against United,” he added. “But we’ve worked hard on what we need to sustain that momentum and make sure we get ourselves in a position to secure the game as early as possible. It’s going to be a very different game with all the travelling we need to do, we have to take two flights to get there so it will be tough for us but we have to keep playing our way no matter where or who we face.
It’s imperative we maintain our focus for the full 90 minutes, nothing less will do if we want to come away with all three points.”
Mike de Bruyn