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Cape Town City v Stellenbosch: Did the Western Cape Derby live up to expectations?

21:43 GMT+3 11/08/2019
Cape Town City v Stellenbosch August 2019 Chris David and Benni McCarthy
The Citizens were 1-0 victors on Saturday night, but did the Derby live up to the hype?

The Western Cape Derby took centre-stage this weekend and certainly showed signs of becoming one of the foremost derbies to look out for in years to come.

While the Derby did not have the same glamour or history compared to the Ikapa Derby- fought between City and Ajax Cape Town, Cape Town City and Stellenbosch were able to ignite their rivalry on the basis of their ambition.

Both clubs come from similar backgrounds. While both have relatively wealthy financial backers behind them, they also want to be seen as a community club and this shows in the type of players they have unearthed as well as their presence in the surrounding areas.

Often, the more homegrown players a club has, the fiercer derbies are likely to become as these players understand the culture of the club.  

This was exactly what was on show on Saturday, and while the crowd was not the best in terms of attendance, there was still an atmosphere worthy of the football on offer, especially after the game was moved to Athlone Stadium from Cape Town City.

This was further helped by Citizens coach Benni McCarthy, who no matter where he goes, brings a touch of ‘Hollywood’. McCarthy’s antics on the touchline fired up his players and they duly obliged, putting everything on the line.

Stellenbosch also deserved credit, because despite being dominated during the first half, their performance in the second half was undoubtedly brave and this made for a nail-biting finish.

They threw everything including the kitchen sink, but Chris David’s well-taken goal proved to be decisive.

This passion and drive spilt over onto the technical benches when the final whistle sounded, and although City survived a few close calls, they were deserved of the three points.

However, the Western Cape Derby might never be as big as the Soweto or Tshwane derbies but it certainly has a place in the hearts of all South African football lovers.