JOHANNESBURG - Beating Baroka FC in their own backyard, especially in the Nedbank Cup, is not going to be an easy task for Platinum Stars, Robert Ng’ambi has admitted.
But the Malawian attacking midfielder argued that his side were up for the challenge.
Dikwena go into Tuesday’s (7.30pm) last 16 Cup tie against Baroka at the Old Peter Mokaba Stadium having come off a 2-0 defeat against Bidvest Wits in a league tie this past weekend, while the Limpopo outfit are high on confidence following their 1-0 win over SuperSport United in a league match as well.
What made that defeat even more special for Bakgaga was they were the ones who ended Matsatsantsa’s record 19-game unbeaten run in their league race. And coming as it did after they held Kaizer Chiefs 2-2, the win gave bottom-placed Baroka some hope they may just survive relegation.
Ng’ambi knows that Dikwena cannot afford to suffer another defeat leading up to their Caf Confederation Cup group tie aaway to the Ivory Coast's AS Tanda this coming weekend.
“The plan is to stay in the running of progressing further in this cup competition,” Ng’ambi said.
“We want to stay in all the three competitions (the PSL, Confederation Cup and the Nedbank Cup) we are currently involved in.
“We know that it’s not going to be an easy match against Baroka because we’re taking on a side which is high on confidence, and have a reputation of being giant killers in this cup competition.
“We are all looking forward to the challenge. I’m confident that we’ll do well.”
The 30-year-old midfielder also admitted that their defeat against the Clever Boys left them dejected, adding that they’ve since worked on their tactical mistakes leading up to this match-up.
“After that match against Wits, the coach spoke to us and told us that we played fairly well and that we’re just unlucky not to score against them,” Ng’ambi said.
“We’ve been working on our tactical mistakes from that match leading up to this encounter. A win will definitely serve as a confidence booster leading up to our match against AS Tanda.
“This season I’ve personally set myself a target of surpassing my goal tally which was seven goals in all competitions in the previous campaign. As it stands, I’m on seven goals and have a whole lot of games to go.
“But, at the end of the day, it’s not about me but the team. Whether I offer an assist or score the goal myself, the team always takes first priority.
“My only wish it to see us progressing further in these two cup competitions we are currently involved in, while also pushing (to stay afloat) in our in a league race as well.”@extrastrongsa