Sibongiseni Gumbi
Football Writer
4 minute read
6 Mar 2020
2:55 pm

Ajax coach wary of fiery ‘Cape derby’ against Umoya

Sibongiseni Gumbi

Ajax Cape Town coach, Calvin Marlin as predicted an exciting game when they meet Cape Umoya Unite in a GladAfrica Championship match at Athlone Stadium on Friday afternoon.

Calvin Marlin, coach of Ajax Cape Town Pic: Ryan Wilkisky/BackpagePix

The match is set for a 3.3pm start.

The Urban are currently top of the Championship standings and are firm favourites for the title and automatic promotion. Marlin’s side enjoy a clean five points lead on Swallows FC who are second. The Spirited Ones are dangerously flirting with relegation as they are 12th with 25 points, just four above the relegation places.

“It’s going to be a tough game, the truth is I feel all Cape Town teams raise their game when they play against Ajax because a lot of players in these squads have been part of Ajax at some point of their careers,” Marlin told the club’s website.

“Coach [Maahier] Davids was also here and he has just brought in (Reyaad) Norodien and Graham (Scott), on top of that he has (Jody) February, Diva (Ndiviwe Mdabuka), Roscoe (Petersen) and I’ve probably missed a name or two, but getting back to the point, it’s not going to be easy at all because they all have a point to prove and I really do believe this game will boil down to who wants it more.

“We don’t have an easy task selecting players because we have a couple injuries now, Katlego (Otladisa) has been ruled out for a long time after finding out he fractured his leg in the Cosmos game and we are getting Abednego (Mosiatlhaga) ready for the match but I am very confident in the squad regardless of who I have to select.

“I have fighters in this team, all I have to say to the players every time we play is; who wants the win more?”

Other fixtures

Saturday

FS Stars v Mbombela United, at Goble Park Stadium, 3.30pm

Ea Lla Koto will feel they still have a chance at finishing in the play-offs position and make a run for the full points especially at home against a side who have been struggling and are in te relegation places. But Tingwenyama will want to climb out of their current position with a rare win away. Mbombela are 15th and Stars are ninth and not really safe from relegation either.

Real Kings v Jomo Cosmos, at Chatsworth Stadium, 3.30pm

The Magic Boys coach, Mike Lukubeni has told Phakaaathi that he is confident his team will meet their set goals of promotion this season.

“It is not an easy game. The teams at the bottom are always the most difficult to plan for because they are fighting for their lives and throw everything at you. They sometimes don’t care how they play so long they get the result.

“Playing top teams is easier because they are a little cautious in their approach because they don’t want to be caught,” said the former Steenberg United coach. Ezenkosi are naturally a team who spare nothing and Lukhubeni is aware of that. He said the have tried their best to ensure they are not caught off-guard by Jomo Sono’s side’s sometimes rough display.

The Magic Boys are eighth and Ezenkosi are 14th.

Tshakuma v TS Galaxy, at Thohoyandou Stadium, 3.30pm

Tshakuma are in the mix for at least a play-offs position finish and will want to keep their recent decent run going. But the Rockets have a new found fighting spirit after the arrival of coach Mabhuti Khenyeza. It should be an exciting game.

TS Sporting v Uthongathi FC, at KaBokweni Stadium, 3.30pm

The Cane Cutters have stalled and fell back to third in the standings with indifferent results lately. They go to Abantu Bemthetho hoping for some redemption. But they will find te going tough at a rejuvenated Nedbank Cup quarter-finalists.

Sunday

Pretoria University v Swallows FC, at Tuks Stadium, 3.30pm

The sides come from contrasting forms with the Dube Birds enjoying a great run while AmaTuks have struggled for results in recent games. Swallows have risen up to second where they trail Ajax by five points and will look to keep their momentum going and forge forward with a win away.

JDR Stars v Steenberg United, at Soshanguve Giants Stadium, 3.30pm

This is a battle of the division’s new boys who ad dream starts but look to have fizzled out as the season progressed. Steenberg are however still in with a chance at play-offs positions and will look to get back to wining ways.

Richards Bay v Royal Eagles, at uMhlathuze Sports Complex, 3.30pm

Eagles are in trouble and desperate for a win going into this game because if they don’t get full points, they might as well start preparing for life in the amateur level. After 22 games, Eagles have managed just 15 points and remain rooted at the bottom of the table. But Simo Dladla will have no mercy as he is also trying to establish himself at the Rich Boys e joined after leaving Kings.

For more news your way, download The Citizen’s app for iOS and Android.