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‘Stiga’ tips Bucs to win

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Former Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates midfielder says the Buccaneers will be too much to handle

LET ME THROUGH: Augustine Mulenga of Orlando Pirates is challenged by Mario Booysen of Kaizer Chiefs during their recent Absa Premiership match. Picture: Samuel Shivambu / BackpagePix

The much-anticipated Soweto Derby between Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates is upon us, and already it is a sold-out affair that takes place at Moses Mabhida Stadium on Saturday at 3pm.

The two Soweto giants will be battling for a place in the Telkom Knockout final scheduled to take place at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on December 8 where the winner of the derby will face either the defending champions, Bidvest Wits or their semi-final opponents Baroka FC.

Both Chiefs and Pirates are on the same mission; they want to end their four-year barren run of trophies.

Former Chiefs and Pirates midfielder, Stanton “Stiga” Fredericks, believes that the Buccaneers are favourites to beat Amakhosi this time around.

“The game is important for both teams. I think Pirates are in better shape at the moment,” Fredericks said in an interview with Independent Media at Moses Mabhida Stadium on Tuesday. “They will go there with all the confidence, especially after winning the last encounter which wasn’t too long ago.

“It is an opportunity for Kaizer Chiefs to bounce back. It is a cup match, it is a derby day and anything can happen,” Fredericks added.

He’s right. Pirates are on a roll at the moment. They are playing with finesse, fluidity and zeal. The Buccaneers haven’t tasted defeat in their last 10 encounters across all competitions, and added to that they are also unbeaten against Amakhosi in the last three years on all fronts.

“If you ask me now, the scale falls in favour of Pirates. If you look at consistency, quality and going forward they are a very attacking team. They are a dangerous side. On the other hand, Chiefs have their defensive frailties which were obviously exposed in the last derby. Hopefully, this is an opportunity for them to bounce back,” he added.

Pirates won that derby at the FNB Stadium 2-1 but they will be aware that it won’t be easy to replicate that kind of performance.

The two sides have met twice at the Moses Mabhida Stadium and on both occasions it was Chiefs who triumphed. Amakhosi dispatched the Bucs 3-0 on penalties after a 0-0 stalemate following 120 minutes of play in the 2010 Telkom Knockout semi-finals.

In 2015, they also locked horns, this time in the final of the MTN8. Tefu Mashamaite headed Chiefs to a 1-0 victory on that occasion.

“It is a going to be a good game because of the attacking strength of both teams. Billiat (Khama) is looking fitter and (Leonardo) Castro is also in good shape. It will be an exciting encounter like the last one. I’m sure we will see goals,” Fredericks predicted.