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Kekana: Mamelodi Sundowns and Orlando Pirates will bring 'A-game' to crucial PSL clash

7:48 PM GMT+4 29/12/2022
Kermit Erasmus, Orlando Pirates & Grant Kekana, Mamelodi Sundowns, October 2022
Mamelodi Sundowns defender Grant Kekana is confident that Masandawana and Orlando Pirates will bring their A-game to the Premier Soccer League clash.
  • Sundowns to host Bucs on Friday
  • Kekana hopeful of high-level showdown
  • Both camps could be boosted by return of key players

WHAT HAPPENED? Sundowns are set to host the Sea Robbers on December 30 at Loftus Versfeld Stadium as the league returns after going on a break during the World Cup in Qatar.

Kekana believes the match is going to be a tough one, but is confident they have had good preparation.

WHAT HAS BEEN SAID: "They are a lot more motivated now, so it's always a tough fixture but also an entertaining one," Kekana said, as per SABC Sport.

"I think we're more focused on ourselves, not too worried about anything else outside. But we motivate each other to always give our best because, even now, everyone is fighting for their place.

"From our side, we always love playing these games, and it's also good for the fans because we know the rivalry.

"But, yes, I maintain that I think we'll be well prepared, it's going to be tough. You can never tell how the game's going every time we play Pirates. They bring their A-game and we bring our A-game."

AND WHAT IS MORE: The 30-year-old believes Pirates have undergone a transition that has seen them improve in terms of quality.

Just recently, Craig Martin and Ndumiso Mabena were confirmed as new signings by the Soweto giants.

"Obviously, you know, as the years go, teams also improve, so I think Pirates have been on a transition where they've been getting a lot more quality players," he added.

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Whereas Pirates will be motivated by their October 3-0 win in the MTN8 semi-final, Sundowns will look to their 4-0 victory in the Carling Black Label Cup in November for motivation.

Furthermore, the Brazilians could be boosted by the return of Peter Shaluile, who had been sidelined with a muscular injury.

On the other hand, Innocent Maela and Nkosinathi Sibisi have returned to training and could be part of the Pirates’ matchday squad to battle the PSL's defending champions.

WHAT NEXT FOR PIRATES AND SUNDOWNS? As they are set to end the year with the crucial game, Sundowns will thereafter set their eyes on their next game against Swallows on January 3.

Pirates will be hosted by Cape Town City on January 7.