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Bloemfontein Celtic take on Cape Town Roses in Sasol championship final

10:59 AM GMT 09/12/2017
Sasol Women's League
The stage has been set for a mouthwatering battle when Cape Town Roses will be taking on defending champions Bloemfontein Celtic

This is the final of the 2017 Sasol League National Championship, where the curtain on the week-long women’s prestigious competition will come down on Saturday, 9 December 2017.

Kickoff is at 15h00.

 

 

Both teams come into match at the back of convincing displays in the semi-final where they defeated their opponents 4-0 each.

Celtic disposed of Thunderbirds while Roses brushed aside hosts Coal City Wizards on Thursday, 7 December 2017.

On paper, the Free State side appears to be favourites against the 2014 winners from the Western Cape – even though neither side has lost a match in the tournament. Celtic won three of their games while Roses managed two victories and drew the other one.

Both teams seem to have equal firepower upfront, and very stingy at the back – Roses rattled the back of the net seven times with Celtic scoring one less. The two clubs have conceded one goal each.

This is not the first time the two sides have met, with Roses having the upper hand as they won their last encounter 3-nil.

“It’s going to be tough, and when we came here we knew we were going to play champions because all nine teams are champions in their own provinces, so when you play champions there are no easy games especially because Celtic are the defending champions of this tournament and they are in high spirits, so they will want to die for the trophy,” said Xolile Madikane, coach of Roses.

“This year we started the tournament very slow with a draw, but we now have our momemtum and we will go at them. We know how they play more so because this is not the first time we play them and we always have tough matches against them even though we end up as winners. As much as they have improved they still play the same old style. They will bring experience and I will bring speed, so it is going to be a very interesting game.”

Due to the history of the two teams, the defending champions are weary of Roses.

“Being the defending champions, it is going to be a tough day at the office because Roses is a very strong team as we have met them several times before, but now it’s payback time – this time we have a plan that will make us retain our trophy,” said Edwin Lisene, coach of Celtic.

“Without doubt we are under pressure because those girls are troublesome, you need to be very careful when you play and you need to give them some respect – it is not going to be a walk in the park. It is not easy to beat them and you need a lot of discipline, but we have a plan. The last time we faced them we lost through our own mistakes, and every game we play is a final. Yes we beat Mamelodi Sundowns but that will mean nothing when we meet Roses, they haven’t changed their team much so they still have the same difficult squad, but I am confident after 90 minutes we will still be champions.”

In 2014, Roses defeated Palace Super Falcons of Gauteng to be crowned champions, while Celtic beat JVW FC, also of Gauteng, to lift the trophy in 2016.

The winning team will walk away with a whopping two-hundred thousand rand (R200.000), while the runners up will pocket one-hundred-thousand rand (R100.000).

The other battle between the two clubs could be in the top goal scorers award. Sisanda Vukapi (Roses) and Kgaelebale Mohlakoana (Celtic) are both on four goals each going into the final.

But there are two other players from Thunderbirds breathing down their necks – Zimasa Dekeda and Mabusi Malishe, as well as Ode Fulutudilo of Roses, who have banged the net three time each.

Thunderbirds face Coal City Wizards in the bronze medal match at 11h30.