Baroka, Chiefs to lock horns in quar­ter fi­nal match

African Times - - Sport - MASHUDU SADIKE

BAROKA FC are yet to lose a match since Macdon­ald Makhubedu took over as interim coach and the new men­tor hopes to up­hold the club’s tra­di­tion of elim­i­nat­ing top dogs Kaizer Chiefs from cup com­pe­ti­tions.

The two sides are set to lock horns in a crunch Ned­bank Cup quar­ter­fi­nal match and Makhubedu has his eye on a semi-fi­nal berth at Chiefs’ ex­pense.

Bak­gaga have twice reached the tour­na­ment’s semi-fi­nals and now are set­ting the tar­get to win the com­pe­ti­tion af­ter elim­i­nat­ing ABC Mot­sepe side Steen­berg United by 2-0 for a last eight spot in this sea­sons in­stal­ment. They have now been fea­tured away with The Phe­feni Glam­our boys.

The 35-year-old for­mer Jomo Cos­mos and Ar­con­bush United as­sis­tant coach be­lieves they have the sup­port struc­ture they need from man­age­ment to beat Chiefs and win The Ke Yona Cup.

“Ja, we can win the cup. We will try our best, at Baroka we al­ways try our best. As long as we in­still dis­ci­pline all round. Our next Ned­bank match is with Chiefs but we won’t re­spect them. They are a part of the com­pe­ti­tion like ev­ery­body else. Ev­ery team that has made it to the last eight is a good team,” said Makhubedu.

“We have to move on from all the neg­a­tiv­ity that sur­rounded the club. The spirit is on top af­ter last week­end. Re­mem­ber we have many ex­pe­ri­enced play­ers who have played in the PSL for a while now like Mathari Mothupa and Let­ladi Madubanya, who has taken over the arm­band,” he said.

Long serv­ing cap­tain Olaleng Shaku was axed from the club to­gether with goal­keeper Os­carine Ma­su­luke and coach Kgoloko Thobe­jane af­ter they al­legedly went on a booz­ing spree on the team bus while re­turn­ing from a league match in Free State.

Club chair­man Khur­ishi Mphahlele echoes the stance of the young men­tor and ap­plies more pres­sure to bring the cup to Lim­popo.

“Our tar­get is to be the last team stand­ing, it has been our tar­get since 2011 and we are go­ing to achieve it,” he said.

Mphahlele also says he has seen im­prove­ment in the team since Makhubedu took charge and has been im­pressed with new cap­tain Madubanya.

“These play­ers are very good and the coach un­der­stands them. You can see the way we beat Cape Town City and you can see the way they are play­ing. You can see a big im­prove­ment with the boys.

“Our new cap­tain Let­ladi brought a lot of ex­pe­ri­ence.

“He can con­trol the last line of de­fence and that’s why we are not con­ced­ing silly goals,” the chair­man says.

On how the fir­ing of Thobe­jane has af­fected the club, Makhubedu said play­ers un­der­stood they had to carry on with the busi­ness of win­ning games for the club.

“The mood in the camp is good. The boys are in form and we are just tak­ing it one game at a time and look­ing for­ward to the next one. We also are tar­get­ing a top eight fin­ish in the ABSA Pre­mier­ship,” he said.

Mean­while, there is only one Na­tional First Divi­sion side re­main­ing in the com­pe­ti­tion as Ubuntu Cape Town de­feated Amazulu. They will now travel to Free State Stars in the last eight.

Cape Town City have al­ready elim­i­nated Bid­vest Wits and Orlando Pi­rates and will now take on Tsh­wane gi­ants Mamelodi Sun­downs.

The Premier Soc­cer League also con­firmed that the fi­nal will take place at the Cape Town sta­dium on 19 May 2018. - Muku­rukuru Me­dia.

QUAR­TER­FI­NAL DRAW:

Mar­itzburg United v Bloem­fontein Celtic

Ubuntu Cape Town v Free State Stars

Cape Town City v Mamelodi Sun­downs

Kaizer Chiefs v Baroka FC

MACDON­ALD MAKHUBEDU

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