Cpae Town City travel to Orlando Stadium filled with confidence after a Tashreeq Morris hat-trick propelled them to a 4-0 victory over last season’s Nedbank Cup runners-up Bloemfontein Celtic.
CAPE TOWN – The mood in the respective camps ahead of Tuesday’s all-important Premiership clash between Orlando Pirates and Cape Town City at Orlando Stadium could not be more contrasting.
Although both teams advanced to the next round of the Nedbank Cup over the weekend, their performances were entirely different.
GladAfrica Championship side Uthongathi FC had Pirates on the back foot for much of their last 32 encounter before the Buccaneers eventually prevailed 1-0 courtesy of Gabadinho Mhango’s strike.
The lacklustre performance by the Soweto giants certainly did not go unnoticed with Pirates supporters venting their frustrations on social media.
City, meanwhile, travel to Gauteng filled with confidence after a Tashreeq Morris hat-trick propelled them to a 4-0 victory over last season’s Nedbank Cup runners-up Bloemfontein Celtic.
Equally, and possibly even more importantly, City have managed to secure the services of influential playmaker and captain Thabo Ndoda on a new contract until 2024.
Ndoda, who bagged the fourth goal against Celtic, has been impressive throughout the season and had been attracting plenty of interest from the likes of Kaizer Chiefs.
Ndoda has previously stated that he would only be lured away from Cape Town if there was a deal on the table from a European club, and expressed why he is so happy to remain at City.
“It’s a credit to the quality of players I’ve been privileged to play with. Cape Town City has been ambitious enough to bring in foreign internationals and a South African in Europe,” Ndoda said
“These additions have always kept me on my toes. My personal goals and targets have also not allowed me to skip a day.”
With Morris now also finding form, City coach Jan Olde Riekerink certainly has plenty of scoring options to call upon with Ndoda, Fagrie Lakay and Mduduzi Mdantsane all in red-hot form.
His counterpart, Josef Zinnbauer, can only look on in envy as his striking department is stretched at the moment. Zakhele Lepasa and Tshegofatso Mabasa are both injured, while Mhango hobbled off during Saturday’s match and is a further injury concern for today.
“We have to work with what we have. I am happy that Mhango scored. But he sustained an injury and I hope he is available for the Cape Town City game. I hope that the (other) injured players return,” said Zinnbauer.
“It was not a good game (against Uthongathi) for us. We created opportunities, but lacked the killer instinct.”
Pirates currently occupy fifth place on the league standings, ahead of City in sixth by just two points.