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Orlando Pirates v Bidvest Wits

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Myeni: In red hot form

Myeni: In red hot form

Several old acquaintances will be resumed when Orlando Pirates welcome Bidvest Wits to the Orlando Stadium on Saturday evening.

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The tie will see Buccaneers coach Roger de Sa come up against his former employers for the first time since switching allegiances in the off-season.

Meanwhile, in the Bucs' squad are a host of former Wits players, including the on-form Sifiso Myeni, renamed Myessi by Pirates fans, as well as goalkeeper Moeneeb Josephs and left back Patrick Phungwayo.

Josephs has, however, been sidelined by injury of late with Senzo Meyiwa in goal for the Sea Robbers.

The Students also have a former Bucs man in their ranks in the form of Mbulelo Mabizela, but he misses this game through suspension.

At home, it will certainly be an in-form Pirates side that will be favourites; three straight wins in the league have ensured the defending champions remain in touch with league leaders and arch rivals Kaizer Chiefs.

Indeed, the Buccaneers have won four of their past five league matches, racking up 11 goals and conceding only two in the process.

Coach De Sa was thrilled to have seen right back Happy Jele returning to the team after 12 months out with a knee injury and scoring in the 4-0 hammering of Black Leopards in midweek.

But he has quite a few other injury issues to think about ahead of the clash in Soweto.

"I am delighted for Happy by making this fantastic comeback. It has been a hard year for him after his horrible injury and I was part of that injury (as then Wits coach), it is great to see him back and get a goal on his first touch," said De Sa.

"My main concern now is Rooi [Mahamutsa], [Siyabonga] Sangweni, Benni [McCarthy], Moneeb [Josephs] and Andile Jali.

"I am delighted with the performances we put in their absence and with the depth we have. When those guys return from injury they will make it hard for me to choose a winning side.

"It will be a tough game against my former club and as a team we are all looking forward to it and we want to make sure we keep the pressure on Chiefs," he told SuperSport.com.

The big-spending Clever Boys go into this match in sixth spot, 11 points off pace-setters Chiefs after drawing 0-0 with Ajax Cape Town on Tuesday, meaning they can ill afford to lose this game.

Wits coach Antonio Habbas Lopez will be without suspended defenders Ebrahim Seedat and Thomas Sweswe, but midfielder Mathew Pattison is expected to return from a hamstring injury.

Last season's two league games between the two Johannesburg rivals resulted in four points for the Clever Boys, thans to a 3-1 win and a 0-0 draw.

Posted: 23/11/12 12:47

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