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The Birds won't be taking their First Division opponents lightly...

Moroka Swallows are determined to salvage what has been a hugely disappointing season when they meet First Division giant killers Pretoria University in the Nedbank Cup final on Saturday.

The high-flying Birds were brought back to earth in the second part of the PSL (Premier Soccer League) season after failing to qualify for the top eight. The Birds slumped badly after a promising start to the PSL season.

Birds assistant coach Zeca Marques had a word with SuperSport, saying that the cup final is the perfect opportunity to end the season with a bang. "Our success or failure this season has come down to the cup final," he said. "We owe it to the fans and ourselves to win the cup and end the season on a high. We started the season like a house on fire, but faded badly and now we have this last chance to set everything right.

"We are totally focused and determined to give this final one big push and win the trophy. It is a classic all-or-nothing scenario for us and we are going to give it everything we have got. I am quietly confident, but we are cautious. Cup finals are all about the side that rises to the occasion on the day and we must make sure it is us and not Tukkies that come out victorious."

Marques stressed, however, there were no favourites or underdogs in Saturday's final, despite Swallows being a so-called 'big PSL club' and AmaTuks playing in the National First Division.

"I have watched Tukkies during their cup run and they are a quality side," he explained. "Frankly, this is one final where there is little in it. Tuks have shown to be a tough side to beat and we will not make the mistake of underestimating them. They have earned our respect by the way they have got to the final beating three PSL sides."

Marques has his work cut out for him after the Birds' bad end-of-season slump saw them finish a lowly 11th in the Premiership. On Saturday, they will have a chance to secure some silverware for their trophy cabinet.

Peter Pedroncelli, Goal.com

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