The Team of Choice ended the 2018/19 Absa Premiership season strongly, claiming 10 points from their final six matches.
That was enough to avoid automatic relegation as the KZN Capital City side lived to fight another day after their 1-1 draw against Baroka FC last weekend.
Maritzburg are now up against NFD clubs Royal Eagles and Tshakuma Tsha Madzivhandila (TTM) in a three-way play-off to see who plays in the top flight next season.
The Durban-based Eagles got their campaign off to a winning start when they beat TTM 1-0 at Chatsworth on Wednesday. Coach Eric Tinkler and his technical team members were in the stands for that game and got to see Sunday’s opponents first hand.
Maritzburg have meanwhile been working hard at training this week to make sure that physically and mentally, the players are all geared up to go in Sunday’s KZN derby.
“The preparations have gone very well, the players are ready and understand the importance of getting a positive result against Royal Eagles,” coach Eric said.
“The mood in the camp is very good and the response from the players on the field has been exceptional.”
The Maritzburg tactician knows full well the task at hand, and will certainly not be underestimating the First Division opponents.
Playing at home though means this is certainly a must-win game for United.
“It’s going to be extremely tough,” he said. “In the history of the play-offs, only two teams who were from the PSL have ever survived and we need to remember that.
“We rely on our 12th man, our fans – they’ve been absolutely fantastic since I’ve been at the club, and we hope they come out in their numbers to support the boys on Sunday, hopefully we will make them proud.”
Brian Onyango is expected to return form injury, which would give the Team of Choice a clean bill of health.