Orlando Pirates wary of early strike from Mamelodi Sundowns

Ben Motshwari of Orlando Pirates with Teenage Hadebe of Kaizer Chiefs.
Ben Motshwari of Orlando Pirates with Teenage Hadebe of Kaizer Chiefs.
Image: Lefty Shivhambu/ Gallo

There's something interesting about Mamelodi Sundowns' goal-scoring habits and Orlando Pirates midfielder Ben Motshwari is aware that Downs usually catch their opponents napping.

The clash between the Buccaneers and Brazilians at Orlando Stadium on Monday could very well come down to small details and Pirates want to ensure they don't fall victim to Downs' quick starts.

Motshwari is aware that Sundowns often try to get on the front foot by scoring early.

Of the 30 goals Downs have scored from 23 Premier Soccer League matches so far this season, 30% - the highest percentage - have come in the first 15 minutes.

Furthermore, 26.7% of their goals have come between minute 15 and 30.

Sundowns have often caught their opponents napping and punished them.

"I think from the first minute we just have to attack.

"We can't afford to concede early because Sundowns have a great tendency of scoring within the first 15 minutes," Motshwari noted during a press conference at their home venue yesterday.

"It becomes difficult to chase them, so for us it's [important] to try to absorb [the pressure] from them and try to score early."

The lad from Randfontein on the West Rand also recognises that there are a lot of teams with a chance to win the title and that beating Sundowns will be vital.

Meanwhile, assistant coach Fadlu Davids was given an opportunity to brief the media for the first time since joining Bucs' technical team in January.

"It's Sundowns on Monday and of course we hope to pack up the stadium with Orlando Pirates supporters at our home ground to give us the advantage," Davids said.

Winger Vincent Pule will miss the match because of suspension.

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