The most exciting and consequential KwaZulu-Natal derby in recent memory is the pick of the action on Saturday as the DStv Premiership race heats up.
Second-placed AmaZulu will lock horns with Golden Arrows who are third in the league standings at the Sugar Ray Xulu Stadium at 3pm.
For the first time in their history, the two teams are genuine title contenders. With 47 points from 25 games, Usuthu are a point behind leaders Mamelodi Sundowns.
Benni McCarthy’s men are on a 14-game unbeaten streak in the league. They have won 10 of those games with the other four results being draws.
Arrows have also been exceptional and are on an unbeaten streak of their own. They have not lost in the last 12 league games with five draws and seven wins.
Arrows coach Mandla Ncikazi sounded unimpressed that his team were getting enough credit while their rivals got most of the praise.
“It will be a territorial battle and a battle for supremacy. We will want to show who is better in the province,” Ncikazi said.
“I think that Arrows have done better, to be honest. For some reason, the media have made it as if AmaZulu have done better. But if you were to compare the two I think we have done better.”
McCarthy downplayed the title talk around AmaZulu.
“Our focus is on the next match. We don’t worry about the game that comes after. We don’t worry about what goes on at other teams. We mind our own business. We don’t look at who wins or who loses,” he said.
“We are focused on us and no one else. Our fate is in our hands. We have to make sure we work harder and run more than our opponents. We have to have more heart. So far we have been able to do that.”
Meanwhile, there is another derby clash in Venda where Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila (TTM) take on Black Leopards.
The two struggling Limpopo teams are in a battle to avoid the drop. TTM are 14th with 22 points while Leopards anchor the table with 15 points from 24 games.
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