Ajax coach Menzo expects physical Baroka to come out punching above their weight

Ajax Cape Town coach Stanley Menzo expects a bruising approach from relegation-threatened Baroka on the last day of the Premier Soccer League season on Saturday as the Limpopo newcomers try to save their status.

Baroka will finish last if they lose at the Cape Town Stadium and go straight back down to the National First Division after just a single season in the top flight.

But Menzo thinks they will put up a stiff struggle to hold on‚ even if his own Ajax side need victory to ensure a top eight finish.

“I’ve watched the videos of them play and they are a team who go for 90 minutes and more. They play‚ run and fight and they are a team that are very direct with good use of wingers and runners‚ which is so important now in modern football. I expect a tough game and a fight‚” he said on the eve of the game.

But Menzo insisted that would not change the Ajax approach.

“We want to play our own game. Our quality is our ability to play football and we are not changing that mentality. Anyway‚ I could not change the approach to take on Baroka directly. We don’t have the players with that physical strength‚” he added.

Ajax were in relegation turmoil themselves when Menzo first took over but now look to complete a fulsome recovery and gain a berth in next season’s MTN8.

“The mood is great at this moment‚ but also probably because it’s the last game of the season!” Menzo quipped.

“The players have had a long campaign with the pressure of being bottom of the log but overall I think we can say that we did fairly well this season.”

Ajax central defender Rivaldo Coetzee misses the match as he has not yet recovered from a hamstring injury.


 - TMG Digital