Sundowns Kick Off Title Chase
The starting gun for the 2015-16 Absa Premiership goes off on Saturday – and by all accounts, the 16 PSL teams are in for what is likely to be the toughest season of the league ever.
Nobody knows this better than Mamelodi Sundowns, who kick off their campaign against Platinum Stars away in Rustenburg on Saturday night at 8:15pm.
Although it is often said that in the league its not how you start but how you finish that determines your league fortunes, the truth is that how you start positions you for the final run-in, something that has been shown and proven in the past.
This is the mental attitude that Sundowns will take into battle against Stars. They know they have to have a good start and run-up to the mid-season break. Last season, the Tshwane giants had a fairly spoor start, considering that they were defending champions and knew that everyone would try to beat the Champs. In spite of this, they gave current champions Kaizer Chiefs a solid run in, but flagged towards the end.
The lessons learnt will put Sundowns in good stead to reclaim the league title. This is the championship that everyone wants, the title that gets the most recognition as it proves winners to have been consistent and persistent in their chase.
Coach Pitso Mosimane has publicy declared that this is the title he wants most. He is hungry for success once more, and having won the title two seasons ago, knows that it is a great feeling.
And so, the focus of his preparations has been on reclaiming the league championship, while keeping the CAF Champions League on the radar as well.
Perhaps one of the most potent of Mosimane’s signings has been Fiston Abdoul. Since joining Sundowns, Abdoul has scored in every game he has played, and once more showed his mettle when he netted the solitary goal against Bloemfontein Celtic midweek. He has proven to be a great box player, ready to pounce at every loose ball. He is clearly an option for Mosimane to use in a twin -striking formation, and may just be the solution to Mosimane’s lament in the past season of a goal-scoring drought .
But it Is also the goal-scoring opportunities that could come from young Keegan Dolly, who put in a man-of-the-match performance against Celtic, coming from scoring a brace for the national U23 side against Zimbabwe.
What all this means is that Mosimane will be spoilt for choice. He has Anthony Laffor and Teko Modise, both of whom are proven goal-scorers. And with Cuthbert Malajila, the attack of Sundowns can be potent.
Platinum Stars have always provided Sundown stiff opposition, to the extent that they used to be known as Sundowns’ hoodoo team. But thats a thing of the past as the Brazilians have got good results away in Rustenberg.
Kick off for the game is at 8:15pm and already Sundowns supporter branches have arranged transport in great numbers for this game.