Black Leopards on the cusp of PSL promotion
Black Leopards look set to join Limpopo based sides Polokwane City and Baroka FC in the upcoming Premier Soccer League (PSL) 2018/2019 campaign if they beat Jomo Cosmos in their last game of the three-team mini league in Thohoyandou this week.
Sharing the spoils with Stars kept Lidoda Duvha’s place at the summit of the standings with five points at the halfway mark after playing to a 2-2 draw with Platinum Stars at Moruleng Stadium at the weekend. The home win over Cosmos will seal promotion.
Lidoda Duvha are appearing in their fourth play offs in five seasons. The previous three editions have all ended in disappointment for the Limpopo side. But Coach Joel Masutha is confident that his charges have one foot in the elite league.
“We should not look at other teams and over asses them, we must look at us and concentrate on the next game which is Cosmos,” said Masutha.
“We are confident that we will make the PSL this time around. The boys have the most valuable play-off experience than the other teams and can definitely handle the pressure.
“They have given me a lot so I’m expecting the same fighting spirit that they have given all around. These are the same crop of players that played last year,” the coach said Masutha.
Stars were forced into the playoffs through the backdoor with second-division sides Leopards and Cosmos after finishing second-last in the Premiership last season. They had re flirted with relegation to the National First Division (NFD).
Dikwena, who got a second chance to stay in the Premiership after Ajax Cape Town were docked points by a Fifa arbitration that saw them automatically relegated, will face Cosmos in the last playoff match on Saturday.
Stars can still top the final standings in the mini league only if Cosmos win at Leopards, then lose at home to Stars on Saturday which would leave all three clubs on five points and therefore bringing goal difference into play.
Masutha also congratulated striker Mwape Musonda who has been lethal in front of goal and had tongues wagging in the Stars match after scoring a sensational brace.
The burly Zambia-born striker equalised twice in a 2-2 draw at Platinum Stars in a thrilling match. His first goal was a master class of agility and timing as he scored via a bicycle kick reminiscent of Real Madrid winger Gareth Bale’s effort in the Uefa Champions League final against Liverpool.
“Mwape belongs in the Premiership. He works so hard at training and pushes himself to the limit every day,” said his coach after the Cosmos match
Coach Masutha hailed the goal poacher as the “Ronaldo” of South Africa after his wonder goal pushed the club closer to promotion into elite league.
“That goal resembled the Cristiano Ronaldo bicycle-kick goal for Real Madrid against Juventus in the Champions League this season,” said Masutha.
Many South Africans will have missed the Musonda goal as they were watching Real Madrid beat Liverpool 3-1 in the Champions League final at the same time.