JOHANNESBURG – Mamelodi Sundowns’ reserve team coach David Notoane has described their upcoming final fixture of the season as “putting a tile roof onto our double-storey house” that has been under construction since the beginning of the season.
Sundowns started the campaign as defending champions of the MDC but their barren-run in the first four games was enough to rob them of their title, allowing Golden Arrows to win the championship.
However, as the season has progressed, the Brazilians started to gel as a team, losing only once in their last 10 matches in all competitions.
On Saturday at Makhulong Stadium, they’ll have a chance to complete their homestead, if they beat Kaizer Chiefs in the final of the MDC Diski Shield.
“On Saturday, we are putting the roof, a tile roof for that matter,” Notoane said. “We are not putting zinc because it can bring in a lot of heat into the house. This team was under construction in the first games of the league; early stages of a building process.”
“Finally, our double-storey house has taken shape and now we put on the roof. So Chiefs must know, we are in a better space now compared to the last time we played them.”
That was a thrilling 3-2 comeback against Chiefs on match-day five. Seven months since that spectacular game at a sold-out Vosloorus Stadium on Heritage Day, Masandawana have rediscovered the form that made them MDC champions a season ago.
Notoane acknowledges that Chiefs have also found a balance between developing players holistically and instilling a winning mentality.
“Chiefs are matured now, compared to the last time we played them; they’ve grown and so have we,” Notoane explained. “It was important to get into such a final because it’s two young teams that have grown. I think it will be exciting because as young as the boys are, they have to deal with the nerves and emotions of being in a final.”
He added: “From a tactical point, I can only hope that they’ll also play from the front foot; take the game to us and we take the game to them. But tactics will always depend during the game on how you react.”
“We look forward to an attacking game that should produce lots of goals but obviously not against us because we want to keep a clean sheet.”