Celtic to face tough opponents

2020-02-12 06:06
Bloemfontein Celtic forward Aviwe Nyamende (white), jumps to avoid a slide tackle by AmaZulu’s defender Phumlani Gumede. Photo: Teboho Setena

Bloemfontein Celtic forward Aviwe Nyamende (white), jumps to avoid a slide tackle by AmaZulu’s defender Phumlani Gumede. Photo: Teboho Setena

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Bloemfontein Celtic breathe a sigh of relief despite being drawn to face off against tough opponents Maritzburg United in the Nedbank Cup last-16 group stage.

The fixture will be played on home soil in Bloemfontein.

The Premier Soccer League (PSL) conducted the draw on Monday (10/02), pairing the 16 remaining clubs for the next leg of the championship.

The dates of the fixtures will be announced soon. Eight clubs from the remaining 16 in the group will progress to the quarter-finals.

Celtic reached the last-16 group stage after demolishing AmaZulu by 4 – 1 in the last-32 group stage encounter. The match was played at the Dr RP Molemela Stadium in Bloemfontein last Saturday (08/02).

United overcame Stellenbosch FC, 5 – 4, through penalties to secure a slot in the last-16 group stage of the lucrative championship.

The competition offers the overall winner a chance to compete for the continental championship.

Celtic’s technical team of Lehlohonolo Seema, John Maduka and Simon Gopane will look to exploit home advantage. The trio has done well to assemble a formidable team boasting youthful talented players.

Under the mentorship of former Bafana Bafana star midfielder Eric Tinkler, United would be tough to beat in the competition.

The team has gained valuable experience for championship success. The improved outfit finished as the 2018 Nedbank Cup runner-up after narrowly losing by 0 – 1 to Free State Stars in the competition final played in Cape Town.

United finished as the 2019 Telkom Knockout Cup runner-up after losing by 2 – 1 to Mamelodi Sundowns in the final played in December last year.

Based in Pietermaritzburg in KwaZulu-Natal, the outfit can never be underestimated given its current form.

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