Double trouble



May 18, 2016
Double trouble

PRESSURE: SuperSports Baxter and Pirates Tinkler.

Bucs and United face two battles.

Two teams looking for redemption to end off disappointing seasons by their standards.

That’s how you describe Orlando Pirates and SuperSport United.

These two sides will play each other twice in the space of seven days for two big prizes.

First this weekend they meet at Orlando Stadium in the battle for a top eight finish.

The Buccaneers are in seventh right now but there is no room for error as they are level on points with Golden Arrows while SuperSport, in ninth, are just one point off those two.

For a team like Pirates it is unthinkable to not finish in the top eight and to not be in the MTN8 next season.

And for Matsatsantsa, the same applies. They were tipped as dark horses for the title at the start of the season because they spent big bringing in players like Dean Furman.

For them to end up in the bottom half of the table after all that would be a hammer blow.

They can’t have one eye on what’s to come in Polokwane a week later even though that would really be the ultimate prize.

Winning the Nedbank Cup would really shut everyone up, I’m sure Eric Tinkler would love that.

They meet in the final again after impressive wins in their semis on Saturday.

Pirates had only scored one goal in their last four games before they faced Free State Stars but boy did the floodgates open then.

Once Lucky Mohomi’s own goal gave them the lead, they banged in three more to win 4-2.

Their defending, however, especially at the first Stars goal and also last week against Chippa United, will still be a big worry.

And given the quality of SuperSport’s attack, they cannot afford to repeat the same mistakes or the likes of Thuso Phala and Jeremy Brockie will have a party.

SuperSport then brought Baroka’s fairytale run in the Cup to an end in fairly clinical fashion.

Two goals in seven minutes at the start of the second half was all they needed to wrap the match up as Baroka never really threatened too much.

Two key clashes in such a short space of time between Pirates and Matsatsantsa means a lot of pressure on the coaches.

Stuart Baxter and Tinkler will have to be clever in the way they alter tactics for the two games and that will be the biggest difference.

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