Soccer Betting News - SA's Leading Soccer Betting Newspaper: Arrows prepared to slay Sundowns in MTN8 semi-final

Arrows prepared to slay Sundowns in MTN8 semi-final

Lehlohonolo Seema

Mamelodi Sundowns take on Golden Arrows in the MTN8 semi-final second leg tonight at Lucas Masterpieces Moripe Stadium with each side showing contrasting form of late.

Arrows sit in eighth place on the DStv Premiership table while Sundowns top the table with 13 points from five games and remain undefeated.

In their last league outing on Saturday, Arrows drew 1-1 with Sekhukhune United while Sundowns beat great rivals Orlando Pirates 2-0 at Orlando Stadium on Saturday.

In their first-leg MTN8 meeting at Sugar Ray Xulu Stadium, the sides drew 1-1 with Arrows scoring in the sixth minute through Nqobeko Dlamini while Sundowns fought back to grab the equaliser in the 85th minute when Slovak forward Pavol Safranko scored.

Sundowns have a great record against Arrows and have won 15 matches out of 29 games. Arrows have seven wins.

Both teams have not won the annual top eight event much since its inception in 1972. Sundowns have won it three times, the last win was in 2007 while Arrows won it in 2009. The event has been dominated by Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates who have won it 25 times between them.

Good news for Sundowns is that forward Gaston Sirino makes a return to the setup from injury but midfielder Themba Zwane is expected to miss the games as he remains sidelined with injury.

For Arrows they could be without defender Divine Lunga but closer to the game he may undergo a fitness test.

Arrows coach Lehlohonolo Seema thinks despite Sundowns' great run of form they are definitely beatable.

"I don't think they are unbeatable as long as they are competing with the other 11 players. They have their moments where they are defending and if we have luck on the day and convert opportunities, we can have a chance," said Seema.

"I think it's too early for me to say Sundowns are unbeatable. They will still face a lot of challenges and teams will try to compete with them. I think one or two surprises may come.

"I don't think we can say they are running away and they would beat everyone because teams that have played them came close to get a result," he added.

Sundowns co-coach Manqoba Mngqithi says they are not walking into Tuesday's game expecting an easy match and expects Arrows to be tough opponents.

" We are playing against a very organised team, a team that scores goals and a team that has both their strikers on form," said Mngqithi.

"[Knox] Mutizwa has come back and is still scoring goals and [Nduduzo] Sibiya is beginning to show his magic. I believe he is the one player who can give Arrows so much. Sometimes maybe he does not work as hard but at the moment he is on fire and looking good.

"We know we are playing against a very organised team but we have a responsibility at Sundowns to try and take the team to the final.

" We will have to do our best to make sure we keep a clean sheet, that is the starting point, and probably try to score a goal or two to make sure we confirm our position in the final.

"But we know it is not going to be easy. With their transitions they can be very dangerous and they can also destabilise your flow of the game with their counter-pressing, but we believe we have a team capable of playing this match and going through.

"Everything favours us."