TOUGH ASSIGNMENT: Pitso Mosimane has a tough first encounter against FS Stars as coach of Sundowns. Picture: Gallo Images
The Pitso Mosimane era at Mamelodi Sundowns starts tonight at Free State Stars’ Charles Mopeli Stadium and even those who envy his hefty R600000 monthly salary would probably hesitate at the daunting task ahead of him.
The former Bafana Bafana coach accepted the challenge of stopping the downward spiral that has had Downs in its grip and has them lying in the relegation zone. As a starting point, a settled Stars playing in their own home yard may not be the easiest prey for Mosimane, who is obviously after an emphatic start.
The hosts, who are placed sixth on the Absa Premiership log with 17 points from 12 matches, have recorded two wins, three draws and suffered just one defeat from their six home matches this season. They will not be keen to drop any more points at home and have done their homework on the opposition, including what the presence of a new coach can do.
“We know this pitch properly, so it will always be a little difficult to play us here. Sundowns are a totally new ball game under their new coach. They are looking to bounce back from a loss in the Cup final, and we know the backlash will be directed at us. We will have to be cautious but it will be a difficult match to play,” captain Kennedy Mweene said. “They have a new coach so every player would be looking to impress, but we have been working hard on our own game and are ready to take our chances when they come.”
Ea lla Koto will also encounter former team mate Edward Manqele, who will be making his first trip to QwaQwa since he left the Free State at the end of last season in a highly publicised move to Chloorkop.
Meanwhile, Mweene’s opposite number, the Brazilians’ goalkeeper Wayne Sandilands said his team had a difficult match against a dangerous team.
“Stars are a very confident side, as things are going much better for them in the league than they are for us. We have to apply ourselves well. I believe we can go out there and get the points.”