Martin warns AmaZulu of relegation threat as Sundowns test looms
'If we don't do well and drop to 13 and 14, we'll start looking at relegation and start being afraid,' said the AmaZulu head coach.
Pablo Franco Martin would rather be playing Sundowns at the Moses Mabhida Stadium. Picture: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix
Mamelodi Sundowns are back on the road again following the trip to the Democratic Republic of Congo to play TP Mazembe in the CAF Champions League.
The Brazilians will be looking to bounce back from the disappointing 1-0 defeat to Mazembe when they take on an equally wounded AmaZulu in a DStv Premiership encounter.
Usuthu come into the game on the back of a heartbreaking 3-2 defeat to TS Galaxy in a Carling Black Label Knockout semifinal. Both teams only have themselves to blame for losing their respective matches after missing a number of good chances.
A victory for Sundowns will extend their PSL record to 10 consecutive league wins. Meanwhile, the KZN side has been blowing hot and cold with two wins, one draw and two loses from their last five games in all competitions.
AmaZulu are languishing in 12th position on the log and club head coach Pablo Franco Martin has urged his players to start picking up points.
“Every player wants to play against Sundowns and they don’t need anything special from my side in terms of motivation,” he said.
“We need to recover players. We don’t have too many options to rotate players. We need to know that we are also playing for our futures. We all want to play for the same objectives of last season and be in the top 8.
“If we don’t do well and drop to 13 and 14, we’ll start looking at relegation and start being afraid. Maybe that can happen if we’re not focused.”
‘It’s a pity’
The game will take place at King Zwelithini Stadium and Martin is not entirely happy with the decision as he prefers to play at the iconic Moses Mabhida Stadium.
“The best thing is that we are playing in three days in terms of recovering everyone and mentally it’s a nice game because it’s against Sundowns,” he concluded.
“It’s a pity that we’re playing as a local team and not at our stadium but also due to the situation of our stadium right now, I don’t mind because I prefer to play in stadiums that are in a better condition.
“I think it’s a pity that we have to play the game (away from Mabhida) because of the condition of the stadium right now. It’s something that needs to be said and they need to solve it.”
AmaZulu will be without Augustine Kwem while Sundowns will miss the services of Bongani Zungu as both players are suspended for the match.