Kaizer Chiefs’ bid for a first Premier Soccer League title since 2015 continues on Sunday when they take on defending champions and hosts Mamelodi Sundowns at Loftus Versfeld.
With Chiefs having won their last league outing, a 2-1 victory over Baroka FC at home, they are keen to continue on that path in these early days of the league marathon.
But that quest will see Sundowns standing in their way as the Tshwane giants are eager to pick themselves up from an unconvincing run of form.
Sunday’s match comes just less than a month after Masandawana knocked Chiefs out of the MTN8 at the quarter-finals stage via a penalty shootout.
Masandawana are expected to welcome back from injury key players in Themba Zwane and Mosa Lebusa as per the coaches’ forecast just before the international break.
The two missed Sundowns’ last two games, the 0-0 league draw away at Chippa United and the MTN8 semi-final, first leg 1-1 share of spoils against Golden Arrows.
Mothobi Mvala is definitely back after he missed their last match but recovered in time to do national duty with Bafana Bafana.
Gift Motupa and Khuliso Mudau are doubtful for this game while Lebohang Maboe is ruled out as the attacker is set to miss the rest of the season with a knee injury.
Last Thursday, Chiefs coach Stuart Baxter said they were trying to manage the fitness levels of Keagan Dolly and Khama Billiat.
Despite starting against Baroka, Dolly is yet to reach the best shape Baxter wants him to have.
Billiat was being checked if he returned from international duty with Zimbabwe without any knock and is expected to feature against Sundowns.
Forward Leonardo Castro is ruled out as he is recovering in his native Colombia after undergoing surgery.