Absa Premiership Preview : Orlando Pirates vs Ajax Cape Town
Orlando Pirates will look to register their first win of the 2014 when they welcome Ajax Cape Town in the Absa Premiership match at the Orlando Stadium on Monday night, kickoff at 19:30 CAT.
The Buccaneers, who are playing catch-up after their CAF Champions League commitments forced them to be left behind in terms of the league run, have already played twice this year but could only afford to collect a point out of possible six.
They opened the year against Supersport United at home and lost 2-1 in a match they should have won looking at the chance they created, before visiting AmaZulu where they also dominated the match but ended up drawing after taking the lead early in the second half.
They now have to do things better against coachless Ajax Cape Town side after their coach Mushin Ertugral resigned last week and the club has appointed assistant coach Ian Taylor to take over from the Turkish as an interim coach until the club find a suitable replacement.
Olando Pirates are 9th on the log with 17 points from 10 matches, while Ajax Cape Town are 8th on the log with 19 points from 14 matches. A win for the Buccaneers will see them sit on top-half of the table for the first time this season while a win for the Urban Warriors will be a good start for their caretaker coach.
Ian Talor knows the task that awaits him against the South African giants on Monday night. “Facing Pirates is never easy and we are aware of the task at hand. Mushin (Ertugral) has laid a foundation for me to build on,” said the English.
“All the players are giving 100 percent at training and they are looking forward to playing their first of 2014.
When both teams met last season, Orlando Pirates were better of the two sides, winning 2-0 at home before coming away from home with a 2-2 draw in a thrilling match at Cape Town stadium. Ajax are coming to this match with good news of centre-back Nazeer Allie who is fit to play for the first time this season after a long layoff injury and he might start on Monday.
Orlando Pirates on the other side will still be without the services of injured defender Siyabonga Sangweni, Patrick Phungwayo and star midfielder Andile Jali, who is completing his move to Belgian side KV Oostende.