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Football | Absa Premiership

Luc Eymael © BackPage Pix

Free State out for revenge against City

Free State Stars will be gunning for revenge when they host Cape Town City in their Absa Premiership encounter on Saturday evening at Goble Park Stadium.

Kick-off is at 6:00pm.

The hosts succumbed to a 1-0 defeat at the hands of the Capetonians in the opening round and will be hoping to avenge their loss.

However, heading to this encounter Stars are motivated by their 1-0 win over struggling league champions Bidvest Wits last Friday.

On the log table, they sit at No 3 with 25 points from 16 matches and coach Luc Eymael has turned the side from relegation candidates into a title chasing outfit.

Sitting at No 2 on the standings with 27 points means Cape Town City will want to keep the pressure on log leaders Mamelodi Sundowns.

The Citizens are also fresh from three successive victories over Sundowns, Platinum Stars and AmaZulu.

What the teams are saying

Free State Stars coach Luc Eymael:

“We have played 16 games – 14 games remain. So it’s too early to say that we will be in the top three or top four‚” said the coach.

“When I said to the media that I wanted to take Free State Stars into the top eight I think everyone was thinking that Luc Eymael is Mickey Mouse‚ he’s not humble.

“But if I did it with Polokwane City why not with Stars?

“But OK‚ with what I am giving from my kind of training‚ I know my style and how I am working.

“You have to take one game at a time. Our next is against Cape Town City.

“We lost 1-0 there on a really stupid goal before‚ and I hope we will get our revenge.

“But we have to be realistic and keep our feet on the ground‚ work harder and remain focused.”

Cape Town City midfielder Mpho Matsi:

“We are doing well heading to Bethlehem and we are ready to face Stars at their home ground,” said Matsi.

“It will be tough, but we have three wins in a row and that has brought back the confidence and belief in the team.

“Stars are also doing well and the fact that they are in the top three means they mean business as a team. We beat them in Cape Town – but this will be a new ball game.

“However, we are confident we can go all the way and claim the full three points because we want to remain on the top.”

Key players for Free State Stars:

Thamsanqa Teyise:

Teyise has grabbed his opportunity with both hands and is becoming one of the trusted campaigners for Ea Lla Koto. Having netted a vital goal against the Students, his aim is to continue delivering solid performances for the hosts.

Sinethemba Jantjie:

The hard working winger is causing havoc in the opposition half for Stars and will be hoping to be in fine form on the day. However, coach Eymael will have to ensure he converts the chances he creates as he is quick and tricky heading into the final third.

Key players for Cape Town City:

Sage Stephens:

The former Moroka Swallows goalkeeper has claimed the No 1 jersey as his own and will be the man tasked with stopping Stars at home. His ability to marshal the defence will be a plus for the visitors.

Edmilson Dove:

The Mozambican defender is one of the most consistent performers for the Mother City side. His ability to man the left wing will be key as Stars will be firing on all cylinders this weekend.


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