Stellies look to snap out of poor form

Talisman Mendieta available for City clash

Neville Khoza Journalist
Junior Mendieta of Stellenbosch.
Junior Mendieta of Stellenbosch.
Image: Muzi Ntombela

With Stellenbosch going through a slump, they will look at their impressive record against Cape Town City as a sort of inspiration ahead of their clash at Danie Craven Stadium tonight (7.30pm).

Stellies boast a good record against the Citizens, with four victories and a draw in their seven previous meetings, and remain unbeaten in their last four clashes against their neighbours.

Although the odds are stacked against them going into this game as the Winelands side are winless in their past nine matches, they will draw some confidence in the fact that they have done pretty well against City.

Steve Barker’s charges last won a league game when they beat Maritzburg United 3-0 in October last year and since then, they have been struggling for form.

They face a City side who won three of their last five matches, drawing one and losing the other and will be looking to build on that. However, Barker remains positive that they will get a good result against their neighbors, which could improve their confidence.

”It has always been a competitive game between the two teams and there is no love lost between the two teams in the field of play,” Barker said.

“Once we go into the field, the players are always excited to have bragging rights here in the province. A big fixture for us and it is not a secret that we are searching for a big performance to get the result that we need.”

Stellies will also welcome back their talismanic midfielder Junior Mendieta, who missed their 4-1 defeat to Orlando Pirates last Sunday after accumulating a fourth yellow card during their 1-0 defeat to Sekhukhune.

Mendieta’s creativity was missed against Pirates and his availability should be a plus factor in the derby.

Meanwhile, City coach Eric Tinkler urged his side not to take Stellies for granted despite being struggling for form.

“Obviously, Stellenbosch are going through a bit of a rough at the moment struggling to get positive results, but I don’t think that means anything because it is a derby,” Tinkler told the club media department yesterday.

“They will come out fighting. We’ve seen it [all before] because we’ve played them a lot, especially friendly matches. And they know us quite well, so we definitely are not going to underestimate them. We will make sure we go there and play with a lot of positivity and aggression.”

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