Rabbits wary of backlash

Ramatsiyi Moholoa

Ramatsiyi Moholoa

After two consecutive defeats by Ajax Cape Town, Mamelodi Sundowns have regrouped and hope to rise from the ashes tonight.

Sundowns host red-hot Benoni Premier United at Super Stadium in Atteridgeville in a Castle Premiership clash that kicks off at 7.30pm.

The Urban Warriors bundled the Brazilians out of the money-spinning Telkom Knockout Cup and went on to beat them in the league last Saturday.

On the other hand, the Rabbits have done pretty well in their last four league games, beating Orlando Pirates, AmaZulu, Jomo Cosmos and Bidvest Wits.

"It will be a hell of a tough match, United are on song and it will be suicidal for us to underestimate them," said Walter Kutumela, Downs' general manager.

"The two losses by Ajax have naturally disappointed all of us but it is now water under the bridge and we are looking forward to doing well against United. We cannot afford more slip-ups," said Kutumela.

Downs coach Gordon Igesund said he was looking at releasing some of the players and roping in five new players in the new year.

United's chief executive Oupa Mnguni said they won't read too much into the expensively-assembled Sundowns' recent defeats.

"A limping horse is the one that is more dangerous. Sundowns are under pressure after the two losses. We are bracing ourselves for a tough game.

"This is our last match in 2006. We need a win to present to our supporters as a Christmas gift, as a way of saying thank you for their continued support this year," said Mnguni.

Beaford Tshabalala is suspended for United, while Katleho Loke would undergo a late fitness test this morning.

The focus in the game will be on the strikers, with Lerato Chabangu of Sundowns and Bernard Parker of United needing special attention.