Mon 18 Feb by Mark Gleeson
It could turn out to be a decisive couple of days in the race for Premier Soccer League honours as defending champions Mamelodi Sundowns play tonight (TUES) and then face fellow frontrunners Bidvest Wits in a top-of-the-table clash at the weekend.Tonight’s game at Loftus Versfeld in a catch-up fixture for Sundowns, still balancing their bid to retain their domestic crown with the ambition of annexing the African Champions League.They will be hosting Polokwane City, who have lost their last two matches and slipped down to eighth in the league standings, but are an unpredictable outfit, who won on their last trip to Pretoria to face Pitso Mosimane’s side.If Sundowns win by two goals, they will take over at the top of the table on goal difference and still have two games in hand over Wits, who they play away at the Bidvest Stadium on Saturday afternoon.Should Sundowns emerge victorious from both games, they will be sitting comfortably in the lead, with games still to play and the title will be theirs for the taking again.Wits’ hopes rest on bloodying Sundowns’ nose and holding them in the final stretch as the campaign moves into the last 10 weeks of the season.Their preparation plans for the Sundowns game were derailed by the rescheduled trip (seven hours either way on the bus) they had to make to Venda on Monday for the Nedbank Cup tie against Black Leopards after last Wednesday’s initial clash was abandoned following a massive rainstorm.Wits would have had nine days to prepare for Sundowns -- now it is only four.There is also still the chance for the likes of Cape Town City, Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates to make a late surge but the inconsistency of trio makes that possibility seem remote.
Increasingly the race for the PSL title is between two clubs. But with fixtures in hand it is really Sundowns’ for the taking -- if they can overcome Polokwane and Wits over the next days.They have had a decent rest since returning from African Champions League duty in the Ivory Coast and are well placed to win both.
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