Cape Town — Cape Town City coach Eric Tinkler has warned his team not to focus solely on Royal AM's prolific striker Victor Letsoalo in their crucial Premiership encounter at DHL Stadium on Saturday.
Letsoalo has been leading Royal AM's line with efficiency this season propellin the Bafana Bafana target man into a two-horse race with Mamelodi Sundowns' ace goal poacher Peter Shalulile. The 29-year-old has banged home 14 goals this season and is on the shopping list of Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs.
Tinkler, though, does not believe that Letsoalo poses a lone threat upfront for the in-form KwaZulu-Natal outfit as he is well supported by Mxolisi Macuphu and the skilful Ndumiso Mabena.
Macuphu, especially, may not get on the scorersheet as often as Letsoalo, but the former SuperSport frontman has certainly been in good form of late, winning the PSL Player of the Month award for March.
"It's not only Letsoalo," Tinkler said at the pre-match press conference at DHL Stadium on Wednesday. "I think Macuphu has grown since he's moved. He is looking like the player he was a couple of seasons ago at SuperSport.
"He seems to be more energetic. A lot more confidence in his game, so he's always a threat.
"And Mabena has always been a threat. He was always a key to Celtic's success. Even during their difficult periods that they were going through Mabena was carring them through his creativity and ability to feed balls through.
"We can't just focus on purely one player. We have to focus on the entire front three because that front three is definitely their strength in attack.
"Like I said in the past five games they played, they haven't had the most possession, didn't create the most chances but when they did, then one of three were involved or on the end of it. The players understand the importance of looking to shut them down. That is key."
Besides having to contend with Royal AM's front three, Tinkler has worked hard during the week in preparing his own strikers to capitalize on any opportunities that come their way as the Citizens seek a record-breaking fifth successive victory.
He will hoping any of the chances City do create falls to Khanyisa Moyo, who has been finding the back of the net regularly of late for the blue am and yellow.
"Royal AM have proven to be a real stubborn team to score against. Teams they have played against have created more chances than them, had more possession than them, but somehow they have managed to get the results," the former Bafana hardman said.
"Our preparation is very important. What we do that final third is crucial. In the last five games we have analysed of them, the opposition has had five clear chances more than them.
"It is very important what we do offensively. We are playing at home, we need to be positive, we need to go out and play without any fear. We could potentially have our fifth win which has never been achieved."
Royal AM are currently second on the table and City in fourth place with the winner seeking to secure the second Caf Champions League place behind champions-elect Mamelodi Sundowns.