Golden Arrows coach Clinton Larsen not giving too much away ahead of Orlando Pirates clash

Abafana Bes'thende are looking to carry their league form into cup competition when they tackle the Buccaneers

Lamontville Golden Arrows open their Telkom Knockout last 16 campaign against Orlando Pirates this weekend, and coach Clinton Larsen opted to play his cards close to his chest as his charges gear up for what could be their biggest game this term.

Abafana Bes’thende have had a dream start to the 2017/18 season and are the only team in the league yet to taste defeat since the new season commenced. The KZN side are second behind first-placed Baroka FC in the PSL standings with 16 points having won three and drawn six matches from nine encounters. 

Larsen did not give too much away on how they will prepare for the mouth-watering encounter against the 2011 TKO winners come Saturday.

He told the media at the team’s training sesssion on Wednesday: “I suppose times are changing, they play the middle of the half to a certain extend but like they say the big boys always come back to the top so we will have to wait and see maybe that will happen.

“We’ve had a good start which is something we wanted to achieve after the preseason that we had. We had a very good preseason with good planning and wanted to get off to a positive start like we did last season and we managed to do that which is very good for the club, “ Larsen said.

The former Bloemfontein Celtic coach also emphasized that it was imperative to keep their winning momentum especially on how the players have responded since the new campaign got underway.

“Players are full of confidence and believe that they can take on anybody in the league which is a good feeling to have at the club, so we looking forward to our next game."

In terms of how they will prepare for the Buccaneers, Larsen admitted that the tie would be a tough one but simultaneously pointed out that there were a few things they have picked up about the Soweto side which they would work on.

“We know it’s going to be a difficult game against Orlando Pirates. We’ve noted that there is a different approach from the old Pirates and we working hard to try and neutralize any threats we have picked up so far, “ Larsen further added.

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Captain Matome Mathiane who is expected to make a return to the squad, sounded overly excited about the task at hand as they look to upset the Mayfair outfit and book themselves a last eight berth.  

“I think all of the players want to make history for themselves and I think it’s not going to be an easy game for us but it’s an advantage game for us because we are playing at home at Moses Mabhida (Stadium). I think we are ready to go and win the game, “ Mathiane concluded. 

Arrows will hope for a much better showing this time around in cup matches after they were dumped out by reigning PSL champions Bidvest Wits at the first hurdle in the now concluded MTN8.