By NAKAMPE LEKWADU
IT is back to business and players are dusting off their soccer boots from festive season in preparation for some challenges in the Absa Premiership.
While some clubs will be trying even harder in their attempt to challenge the league title, others will be in a scramble to survive the big chop to the lower division.
Although the league action resume on Friday, January 7 with two matches involving Santos v Golden Arrows and Maritzburg United v Mpumalanga Black Aces, the main focus will be in Johannesburg’s FNB Stadium, the venue where the stage has been set for a top-of-the table clash encounter between Kaizer Chiefs and Mamelodi.
The match kicks off at 3.30pm, and there is no doubt that spectators can expect to be treated to an action packed game.
The Brazilians goes to this match highly motivated by the fact that they are on top of the log with 27 points and a victory can see them cementing their position while on the other hand victory for Amakhosi (second position with 23 points) will see them closing the gap against the Tshwane-based side.
The home side (Chiefs) are highly motivate after playing well in their last league match on the 2010 calendar, beating Black Aces 2-0 away with the free-scoring Knowledge Musona scoring both goals and it is a naked truth that Sundowns defenders are wondering how they are going to close down the Zimbabwean-born striker.
The Chiefs’ celebrated star is the current premiership’s leading goal-scorer with nine goals and the Saturday match could provide him with another opportunity to stretch his goal tally.
On the other hand, Sundowns will also want to rectify the mistakes from the last league match which saw them lost 3-2 at home to AmaZulu.
Chiefs defenders can also expect the restless 90 minutes should the likes of Katlego “Killer” Mphela, Lebogang “Cheese-Boy” Mokoena and Mabhuti Khenyeza who always goes crazy in front of any goal-mouth should they be in the starting line-up.
The Saturday clash is the 11th meeting between the two sides since 2006, and the statistics shows that the Brazilians have won four of those matches as opposed to two of the Glamour boys while the other four matches ended in draws.
The rest of the Absa Premiership fixtures are:
Friday, January 7: Santos v Golden Arrows (Athlone) and Maritzburg United v Mpumalanga Black Aces (Harry Gwala). Kick-Off for both matches is 8pm.
Saturday, January 8: AmaZulu v Ajax Cape Town (Ulundi, 3.30pm), SuperSport United v Orlando Pirates (Lucas Moripe) and Moroka Swallows v Free State Stars (Dobsonville)
Sunday, January 9: Platinum Stars v Vasco da Gama (Royal Bafokeng) and Bloemfontein Celtic v BidVest Wits University (Seisa Ramabodu). All the matches starts at 3.30pm, unless stated.