Santos out to surprise United

Meshack Motloung

Meshack Motloung

Santos caretaker coach Jean-Marc Ithier would like to prove a point when his side host SuperSport United in the Telkom Knockout last 16 at Athlone Stadium tomorrow afternoon.

Ithier, who has been coaching the People's Team since the league kicked off, is determined to see his side qualify for the quarterfinals of this prestigious competition.

"We expect a tough assignment because we're meeting a team that has a good cup pedigree. We've got a number of youngsters from our development, but we're going to apply a new strategy to put them under severe pressure," he said.

"We're used to defensive tactics, but this time it is going to be a completely different ball game. We've got nothing to lose so we have to attack from the opening right up to the end of the game."

Ithier pointed out that most of their key players were back from injury and their trump card, Erwin Isaacs is spitting fire and should see the People's Team in the last eight of this competition.

Gavin Hunt, Matsatsantsa a Pitori's coach, said they need to be well organised in defence and should be cautious when they attack because they may be caught on the counterattack.

"Cup games are unpredictable and we need to go for goals. We've been working hard at training and the guys are ready and looking forward to the game," he said.

But playing away could be a herculean task for SuperSport who have Dane Klate, Johannes Mahlangu and Thabo September out injured.

But they hope to make do with the likes of Katlego Mashego, Alfred Phiri, Siboniso Gaxa and Ricardo Katza.

The home side will be able to turn to Isaacs, Thembile Kanono, Eleazar Rodgers and Musa Otieno, who will lift the Cape Town side's flag aloft.

This game could be won in the midfield where the two sides are strong, but it will remain to be seen which of the two convert their chances on the day.