5 January, 2023
Orlando Pirates bring up the new year with an away league fixture as they visit Cape Town City for another DStv Premiership outing at Cape Town Stadium on Saturday.
It’s crunch time for all 16 top-flight teams as the league season hits the halfway point, with Pirates looking to grab a crucial three points on the road.
It was not an ideal return to competitive football for the Buccaneers, who suffered an away defeat in their most recent fixture. They will be eager to return to winning ways, having fallen on the wrong side of the result in their last two league outings.
The Soweto Giants have battled for consistency throughout the ongoing campaign, winning just five of their 14 games in the Premiership.
In their last five league fixtures, they have managed just a single victory, drawing twice and losing just as many games, with a disappointing three goals scored and four conceded.
This has placed them in fifth place in the standing, sixth spots above City who are coming off a defeat of their own in their midweek assignment.
The men from the Mother City had resumed league action with a hard-fought win at home to Royal AM - their second victory in their last five games - and have six points to show in this period, having lost their other three games.
Much like Pirates, they have stuttered along in the Premiership this season, with only four wins recorded in 14 games.
There have been some mid-season personnel changes at both camps, most notably Craig Martin’s recent move from City to Pirates.
The speedy wing-back is now eligible for a start against his old club along with striker Ndumiso Mabena, who is back for a second stint at the Buccaneers.
A few key players remain sidelined by injury, with the likes of goalkeeper Richard Ofori currently ruled out for the clash.
The hosts have made some acquisitions of their own in defender Lorenzo Gordinho - who could debut for the Club on Saturday - while attackers Junior Mani and Juan Zapata could both add to their appearances, having had a run in the week leading to the fixture.
City could be missing Congolese international Idumba Fasika, who has not featured since the League’s return due to a reported knee injury.
Monnapule Saleng (Orlando Pirates): Since making a long-awaited Bucs debut, Saleng has been one of the biggest revelations in the South African top flight, and will again command attention from the opposition’s defence. With five goals scored in just nine appearances across competitions, the 24-year-old will be looking to pick up where he left prior to the recess.
Darwin Gonzales (Cape Town City): The attacking midfielder arrived at the Citizens midway through last season and has quickly established himself as a key player for the Club, starting in each of their league fixtures this season. After racing to three goals in the opening month of the campaign, the Venezuelan will be eager to rediscover his goal-scoring form against the Buccaneers.
There has been very little to choose over the years between these two sides, with eight draws recorded in their 14 league encounters.
The wins are evenly shared at two apiece, and it’s the Buccaneers who have a slight upper hand in terms of goals scored, with 15 to City’s 14.
The visitors will be buoyed by their positive record on the road in this fixture, having recorded both their wins away from home, where they are also yet to suffer defeat.
How to Watch Orlando Pirates vs Cape Town City
The fixture is scheduled to kick off at 17:30, and the game will be broadcast live on SuperSport PSL.
Live updates will be available on social media across every Orlando Pirates platform.