Ajax out to halt Baroka’s charge

Ajax Cape Town will be looking to bring an end to Baroka FC’s storming start to the 2017/18 Absa Premiership season when they travel to the Peter Mokaba Stadium on Saturday.

Kick-off is at 3:00pm CAT.

Bakgaga made it three wins on the spin thanks to a 2-0 triumph at Bloemfontein Celtic on Wednesday evening. The Limpopo side’s win in the Free State province followed successive victories over Free State Stars and Chippa United, as they subsequently moved level on 11 points with log-leaders Golden Arrows and Orlando Pirates.

Baroka have claimed four points from their two home matches thus far, and will be aiming to add to that tally when they play host to the Urban Warriors in Polokwane.

Ajax Cape Town’s proposed fixture against Mamelodi Sundowns was postponed due to the Brazilians CAF Champions League commitments, leaving the Cape club with ample time to prepare following their 2-0 win over Polokwane City on September 15.

Prince Nxumalo at the double for Stanley Menzo’s troops as they recorded their first win of the campaign. The Urban Warriors, though, will be without their No 9 for the trip up north as he is yet to recover from injury.

Influential midfielder Grant Margeman, though, could make his return after he sat out the club’s victory over Rise & Shine.

The Urban Warriors have yet to pick up a point on their travels following successive defeats to Maritzburg United and Orlando Pirates.

Predicted starting 11:

Baroka FC: Vries; Shaku, Matloga, Ntshangase, Banda, Moeti, Masenamela, Mothupa, Madubanya, Mdantsane, Nguzana

Ajax Cape Town: Petersen; Evans , Nhlapo, Booysen, Lebusa - Malepe, Mdabuka, Kabwe - Uzoenyi, Mosadi, Morris



Season Result Scorers

2016/17 Baroka 1-1 Ajax Matloga; Paulse (pen)

2016/17 Ajax 0-1 Baroka Madubanya

LEAGUE RECORD (since 2016/17)



Baroka 1 0 1 0 1 1

Ajax 1 0 0 1 0 1



Baroka 1 1 0 0 1 0

Ajax 1 0 1 0 1 1



Baroka 2 1 1 0 2 1

Ajax 2 0 1 1 1 2

What they said:

Baroka FC head coach Kgoloko Thobejane

We have to make sure that we continue playing like this , I encourage this kind of play because in football you score one goal you win a game. Scoring is more important, we can't just defend and not score, you must defend what you have.

As a team, we have set ourselves a target of finishing the league programme in the top teams and nothing will stop us from achieving that goal.

Ajax Cape Town head coach Stanley Menzo

It will be a tough match. Knowing them, they run 90 minutes plus, non-stop. They go everywhere on the field. You can say they are not structured, but that is dangerous, you don't really know how to approach them.

So, it is up to us to play our own game and I told the boys that we need to keep hold of possession and make sure we don't fall into their way of playing because that is not our style and not our strength.

It will be a fight, but we must rise to the occasion and fight. If we can play, we must play.

Key Battles

This encounter will be decided in midfield with the Urban Warriors set to bolster their core in an attempt to extinguish the threat posed by Siphelele Ntshangase and Gift Motupa.

Ndiviwe Mdabuka will have to up his game in the middle of the park, with Menzo likely to call on Rodrick Kabwe & Tercious Malepe - possible shiting Roscoe Pietersen into the six position - in an attempt to dictate proceedings.