Heric hoping for Leopards turn around

Black Leopards will look to raise themselves off the foot of the Absa Premiership table when they host Bloemfontein Celtic at the Peter Mokaba Stadium on Wednesday evening.

Leopards dropped down to last place on the log when the league resumed after its lengthy absence. Their 1-0 loss away to Orlando Pirates, combined with Jomo Cosmos’ 1-1 draw at home to Kaizer Chiefs, saw the Limpopo side leapfrogged by Ezenkosi.

Lidoda Duvha may have succumbed at the hands of the Buccaneers, but there were positives to take from the game for coach Vladislav Heric, as his side pushed the reigning champions all the way – had they scored an equaliser and taken a point, it would have been a deserved result.

The next challenge for Leopards is trying to contain a confident-looking Celtic side. The boys from Bloemfontein racked up a 3-2 home win over Golden Arrows in their first competitive game of 2012 and will come to Polokwane with the belief that they can rack up a fourth straight league victory.

The good news for Leopards is that Phunya Sele Sele have been poor travellers this season: in their eight away matches they have notched up just two wins and suffered no less than five defeats. Seven points from a possible 24 is all they have garnered from their matches on the road.

In terms of head-to-head stats, Leopards and Celtic have done battle in nine league games since the 2004/05 season. There is little to choose between the two sides: the Bloemfontein outfit have three wins compared to Lidoda Duvha’s two, there have been four draws, and Celtic have managed just one more goal, 14 to 13.

At home, Leopards have won just once against Celtic, a 3-1 victory back in the 2005/06 season when Robert Ng’ambi grabbed a brace for the Limpopo outfit. More recent history is the teams’ Absa Premiership meeting earlier this season where Phunya Sele Sele won 2-0 at home thanks to goals from Spandeel and Kekana.

Kick-off at 19h30