Masandawana are set to welcome the Citizens to Tshwane on Wednesday night, and with both sides looking to mount a serious title challenge, the clash has become one of the most eagerly anticipated match-ups of the campaign.
However, could defeat for Sundowns really spell the end of their title challenge? The answer is simply no.
While a loss to a club that has beaten Sundowns four times in all competitions since their inception will come as a psychological blow, the Brazilians can still budget for a few more slip-ups.
Pitso Mosimane’s side still have two games in hand which amount to a potential six additional points which would be enough to overtake log leaders Bidvest Wits.
But at the end of the day, games in hand are not necessarily points in the bag. Sundowns though are still far too strong and determined to let a result against City derail their season, rather a victory for City would mean a lot more to them.
Benni McCarthy’s men have been very impressive this season, particularly since the turn of the year and beating the Tshwane giants would certainly put them among the league’s genuine title contenders.
So, while falling to City will be a minor bump in Sundowns’ plans, it’s nothing to get too worried about or for Mosimane’s troops to start pressing the panic buttons.
Rather, Sundowns’ run-in will see them come up against the likes of Cape Town City away, SuperSport United as well as Orlando Pirates and although this may seem daunting, collecting the maximum points in all those matches is not impossible.
Sundowns will just have less room for error, but on reflection of their recent league triumphs sometimes, it is that same pressure that brings out the best in them.
Meanwhile, City have only the likes of Sundowns and Pirates in their title run-in, which means a win on Wednesday night could go a long way in aiding their title aspirations.
City is a club built on both determination and ambition, and beating Sundowns would make them worthy title contenders, but they still need to win a lot more going into the final stages of the season.