Kick off is at 20h00.
The two glamour teams have met in six Cup deciders over the years, heading back to their maiden Cup final meeting in the 1992 BP Top 8, and the Amakhosi have emerged victors on each occasion and could make it 7 in a row this weekend.
In fact, Chiefs have dominated the Brazilians in the teams’ 21 Cup meetings since 1985, winning 11 matches outright to Sundowns’ four and defeating the Choorkop team a further four times on post match penalties.
One has to look back to the 2000/01 season for the last time the Brazilians defeated their rivals in a Cup competition, a Bob Save Super Bowl semifinal that saw Raphael Chukwu hand Sundowns a 2-0 win.
The teams’ last Cup meeting came at the back end of the 2005/06 season when the Amakhosi claimed a penalty shootout victory in an Absa Cup semifinal on their way to winning the trophy.
Chiefs head into the match on the back of an exhilarating 2-2 draw with arch rivals Orlando Pirates over the past weekend and are certainly taking no chances ahead of the Telkom Knockout Cup Final, as evidenced by coach Muhsin Ertugral’s calculated gamble in withholding Tinashe Negomasha from the Soweto derby, protecting his midfield kingpin from a possible suspension from the final had he picked up a booking against the Buccaneers.
Sundowns themselves have been boosted by the news that Surprise Moriri is likely to be fit enough to start on Saturday evening. The midfielder-cum-forward started in the Brazilians’ 2-2 draw with Jomo Cosmos on Monday, before being replaced just after half time, with coach Gordon Igesund wrapping the player in cotton wool following his knee injury earlier this season.
The fitness of Godfrey Sapula, however, remains a doubt but at least Sundowns will have defenders Vuyo Mere and Shere Lekgothoane back from suspension.
The two teams met in a tepid League encounter at Durban’s Absa Stadium just a fortnight ago that ended goalless. Both sides held their cards close to their chest in what was regarded as a ‘dress rehearsal’ for the final, but the time for practice is over: both teams must now muster all that they can in search of the R4.25-million prize money and the title of Telkom Knockout Cup champions.
(Mamelodi Sundowns v Kaizer Chiefs, Cup meetings since 1986)
Mamelodi Sundowns7 goals – Chafunya6 – Mudau, Chukwu4 – B. Masinga3 – Chitja, Chirwali, Masilela2 – Motaung, Makalakalane, Bapela, Dladla1 – Mosimane, Troughton, Legodi, Moosa, P.Masinga, Phetla, Molefe, Ramasike, Feutmba, Shai, Manzini, Meiring, B.Mnguni, Ngwenya, Mashehe, Sapula, Mthombeni, Moriri, Torrealba, Chabangu1 own goal: Tshivehe (1999/2000)
Kaizer Chiefs5 goals – Molatedi, Khuse, Nomvete4 – MacGregor, Mooki, Mbesuma3 – Ntsoelengoe, Khumalo2 – Dladla, Thindwa, Mtimkulu, Maponyane, Shaw, Nyirenda, Lebese, Nauseb, Nzama, Moshoeu, Obua1 – Khulu, Shongwe, Motaung, Tovey. Modau, Radebe, Amukola, Mabena, Maringa, Mthethwa, Seale, Tshivehe, Gqosha, Modise, Ndlanya, Masunda, Muchichwa, Makua, Pule, Zwane, Mushangazhike, Mabedi, Mayo, Dlamini, Mendu, Kannemeyer, Radebe, Fernandez2 own goals: Anderson (1986), Evans (2001/01)