Final is about more than cup - Gould's or Teko's day?
TOMORROW'S epic Nedbank Cup final between Mamelodi Sundowns and their rivals SuperSport United can perhaps be simply described as the battle for supremacy in Tshwane.
The champions will be crowned in Soweto, though, with the final being played at the Orlando Stadium, starting at 3pm.
However, the venue will not be of any relevance when these two sides meet, though Sundowns did try to have the match moved to Tshwane but later withdrew their appeal from the Premier Soccer League.
Sundowns and United have each had dominant spells during the PSL era, winning eight Premierships (five for the Brazilians) between them since 1996.
But the two teams have never faced off in a cup final in their major years in the Premier League to also extend their authority to cup competitions.
Downs' coach Johan Neeskens, who is in his first season with the club, is renowned for having achieved greatness as a player and partly as a manager. Tomorrow he leads a number of Sundowns players who have underachieved in the past few years, their last cup glory coming in the 2008 when they won the Nedbank Cup in its inaugural year.
The disappointment of their implosion in the second half of the season still lingers.
Gavin Hunt and his charges at United, on the other hand, have recently tasted success with the 2010 Premier League title, but this is their first cup final under the coach, who took over from Bafana's Pitso Mosimane in 2007.
Morgan Gould said the United players were still pinching themselves having reached a final after so many seasons of being knocked out in the early rounds.
The United skipper will also be playing his last game for the club, with a move to Kaizer Chiefs almost certain. "We've got a lot of average players in this team. We are not a star-studded side, but we work hard to make up for that and credit to Gavin Hunt for that," said Gould.
"It will give me absolute joy to lift the trophy, but with cup games you never know how it will turn out."
Gould's Bafana teammate Teko Modise, the Sundowns skipper, has never won a cup final in top flight football.
Modise said he wanted "legendary status" at Sundowns, and lifting the cup tomorrow as captain would earn him that.