Home-ground hopes

Diamond Thopola.
Picture: Gallo Images

Struggling Chilli Boys have to make every point count as the dreaded relegation danger looms

Chippa United defender Diamond Thopola says they will be counting on home-ground advantage to make sure they get the necessary points when they play Ajax Cape Town in a Premier Soccer League fixture, at the Sisa Dukashe Stadium.

The Port Elizabeth-based soccer side find themselves in a relegation battle this season after an impressive sixthplace finish on the log last season.

Chippa are only two points away from the danger zone and in desperate need of points in order to survive the big chop. The team are 13th on the log with 24 points from 26 matches.

With only four matches left before the end of the season the players are aware of the work that needs to be done in order to keep the team clear of relegation.

The Bafana Bafana defender said although there was pressure, the players were ready to fight in order to get the maximum points needed.

“The team is not sitting in a very good position,” Thopola said. “We put ourselves there, so we have to get ourselves out of this situation.

“We are playing at home and we just have to do whatever it takes to make sure we get the maximum points because we can’t afford to draw.

“As much as we are struggling the other teams are also coming up.

“We do not want to see ourselves in a position where our last game of the season is a decider. We just have to collect maximum points, especially at home and then we will see what happens when we play away.”

The former Thanda Royal Zulu skipper said their plan was to limit mistakes or make none, if possible, tomorrow against the Urban Warriors.

He said the goals that the team had been conceding during their previous league fixtures were goals that could have been avoided.

“We just have to be switched on for the whole 90 minutes. Limit our mistakes or make none at all but this is a game of football so mistakes can happen any time.”

“We just have to be strong and encourage the young boys, because we have a very young team – most of them are inexperienced.

“So, we have to be there as senior players to motivate them and get them going.

“Going into this next game we just have to make sure that we don’t repeat the same mistakes.

“This time of the season it’s no longer about our skills or anything because both teams are fighting for survival.

“It is up to us to show the hunger, have big hearts and show character in leading the young boys on the pitch.”

Kickoff is at 3pm.

Leave a Reply