REFRESHED MARITZBURG LOOKING TO KICKSTART SEASON
10 September 2021
Maritzburg United are aiming to put their early-season blues behind them when they face Baroka FC in round three of the DStv Premiership at the Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane on Saturday.
The Team of Choice lost their first two games over the past month, going down to Lamontville Golden Arrows and then league new boys Sekhukhune United.
But they were buoyed this week by two events that are set to inject some new energy into their camp. The club landed an international partner after announcing an agreement with Gift of the Givers Foundation, just hours after young striker Bongokuhle Hlongwane was the match-winner for Bafana Bafana in a World Cup qualifier against Ghana.
Midfielder Daylon Claasen says they are determined to hit back after a battling start to 2021/22.
"We're working hard to try and rectify the wrongs of the past two games," he said. "The past is the past and our focus now is firmly on that Baroka game. I feel the team understands the situation we're in, it's not a place we want to be and everyone is aware of that.
"So we'll be aiming for a positive result against Baroka, who won't be easy, especially because we are facing them in Polokwane. But we're confident and hopefully we'll get the result we desire."
Claasen believes the international break would have done the Team of Choice good, saying: "The break has allowed us to regroup. It was tough losing that last game, but the time off has allowed us to reflect. The confidence also took a knock after losing the last game, but now we feel a bit refreshed mentally and ready for this challenge. We've worked hard on the areas that needed improving and hopefully this will be our turnaround."
Maritzburg have not beaten Baroka in their last three meetings, although their overall record is still better than that of the opposition - with five wins recorded from 10 games. The men from the north have won one and lost one of their two games this term.
"It's still early in the season, so we can't really say we know for sure what to expect," Claasen added. "The focus is just going to be on us to be honest. We need to rectify those mistakes and make sure we get on the board."
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