We know that we are playing a big game and no one needs motivation when it comes to such games – Neo Maema

Mamelodi Sundowns are leading at the top of the DStv Premiership with 52 points and a massive 21 point gap between them and second placed opposition. The defending Champions are currently enjoying their fourteen back-to-back successful victories this season as they push for a record-extending sixth successive Premier Soccer League (PSL) title.

Masandawana’s rising midfield star Neo Maema pointed out what the team has been up to since their last encounter in the capital when they brushed aside Sekhukhune United 1-0 as they now turn their focus to Orlando Pirates, he said: “We just came [back] from an off, we are just rejuvenating and getting back to our groove. We always focus on our own goals but then this one is no different we just have to make sure that we are ready for the game on Saturday.”

“When it comes to the title race, it’s more about bettering our previous season’s points and not looking at what the other teams are saying. We are taking it one game at a time and we are making sure that we accumulate as many points as we did and maybe even more than last season.”

The Buccaneers have been in good form to get to position number four in the DStv Premiership log standing, scoring nine goals while conceding two in their three straight wins heading into Saturday’s game. The two South African Champs have met twice this season, it all started with the MTN8 semi-final clash with the Sea Robbers defeating Bafana Ba Style 3-0 in the second leg en route to claiming the Wafa Wafa title.

“We know that we are playing a big game [and] no one needs motivation when it comes to such games. But I’m expecting them to come more because they’ve also gotten into their confidence and into gelling their players. I think we can expect a very difficult match and a highly motivated team.” Said Maema.

“Pirates are going to come the same way that they came in the first fixture that we played against them, but now they are a bit more different because they used to play three at the back and now they are playing with four. I think they are going to be very motivated, but I think some of their game models haven’t changed much. They are very dangerous on the counter and those are the things we are going to expect from them.”

The Brazilians have showcased spectacular performances in their build up to dominating the South African football spaces, providing their supporters with maximum points and entertaining football in their encounters. Maema called out to the supporters of the club to accompany them as they travel to Soweto and for the Yellow Nation to back the team up as their rivals fans are set to come in numbers. 

“One thing about Pirates is that the supporters are going to be behind them because they are playing at home. It’s not going to be foreign for them to try and come at us and try to get more numbers upfront because they are playing on their home ground. It won’t be a surprise to actually see them come at us, but we have our own goals and processes, we know how to guard against such and we just can’t wait for the game on the weekend.”

“To the Mamelodi Sundowns supporters, we are asking you to come and watch the game and support us as usual, we will be expecting you all in the stands.”

Mamelodi Sundowns lock horns with Orlando Pirates in the DStv Premiership on Saturday, 4 February at Orlando Stadium. Kick off is at 15h30, live on SuperSport.