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Black Leopards cannot afford to face Mamelodi Sundowns while under pressure - Shivambu

21:52 SAST 2020/08/04
Morgan Shivambu, Black Leopards, October 2018
The former Moroka Swallows midfielder has disclosed their plan to avoid relegation from the elite league

Black Leopards caretaker coach Morgan Shivambu has stressed the importance of collecting points in their first four matches when the 2019/20 season resumes. 

Lidoda Duvha are rooted at the bottom of the Premier Soccer League (PSL) standings on 16th spot with six league matches left to end the campaign, which has been suspended since March due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Limpopo-based side's first four matches will be against Maritzburg United, Golden Arrows, SuperSport United as well as fellow relegation-threatened side AmaZulu FC.

Shivambu, who was appointed as the club's new coach on an interim basis following the departure of coach Alan Clark last month, is looking to ensure that Leopards hit the ground running with the team under pressure to avoid relegation to the National First Division (NFD).

“We have to collect points in our first four matches so that in our last two games we’ll be relaxed and we don’t play under pressure,” said Shivambu on Daily Sun

“If we don’t do well at the beginning of this mini-league, it’s going to be difficult for us."

Shivambu also said that they should not be under pressure when they lock horns with top Gauteng clubs Bidvest Wits and Mamelodi Sundowns in their last two games.

"The last two games are against Wits and Sundowns and I don’t want to face those teams while we are under pressure," the retired central midfielder added.

Lidodo Duvha were struggling before the season was halted due to Covid-19 five months ago as they had recorded four successive defeats across all competitions 

Shivambu, who is assisted by former Leopards captain Mongezi Bobe, admitted that the team's defence needs to improve. 

“The players admitted they have been conceding easy goals. We have been working more on the defensive side because we know we are good going forward," he concluded.

The suspended season will be completed in a Biologically Safe Environment (BSE) in Gauteng and Leopards have been drawn to play their home games at FNB Stadium.

Lidoda Duvha are set to resume their league campaign against Maritzburg at the 2010 Fifa World Cup final venue on Sunday, August 16.