Stellies last Western Cape side standing

Devin Titus celebrates after scoring against Pretoria Callies. | Ayanda Ndamane Independent Newspapers

Devin Titus celebrates after scoring against Pretoria Callies. | Ayanda Ndamane Independent Newspapers

Published Feb 26, 2024

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Smiso Msomi

The Western Cape contingent took a huge blow in the round of 32 of the Nedbank Cup as Stellenbosch remained the last Premiership team standing from the province.

Cape Town City, who are second in the elite division, were the first to taste defeat as they were bundled out by SuperSport United via a penalty shoot-out in Pretoria last week Tuesday. The next day Cape Town Spurs were eliminated and even more embarrassingly, by Motsepe Foundation Championship side University of Pretoria.

Devin Titus celebrates after scoring against Pretoria Callies. | Ayanda Ndamane Independent Newspapers

Stellies prevented a disastrous opening round for the region as they overcame Pretoria Callies at the weekend, becoming the the Western Cape’s only remaining team in the tournament. Perhaps it comes as no surprise that Stellies’ run in cup competitions keeps going after their exploits in the Caring Knockout Cup.

The Cape Winelands outfit lifted their first piece of silverware in top-flight football by beating TS Galaxy in December’s final.

Head coach Steve Barker will want to continue his fine campaign this season with another dreamy cup run while maintaining their push for a potential finish in the CAF places.

Stellies currently occupy fourth place on the log and are just three points off the second CAF Champions League spot that is held by Cape Town City.

While many may view it as a disappointment, Citizens head coach Eric Tinkler might see exiting the Nedbank Cup at this early stage as a blessing in disguise.

Tinkler has never hidden the club’s desire to consistently compete at the top end of the league table and having tasted Champions League football, he will be eager for a return.

City are nine points behind log leaders Mamelodi Sundowns, having played two more games, and find themselves in a tight battle for CAF places with the likes of SuperSport, Stellies, Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs.

With 13 games of the season to go, City, given their thin squad, might appreciate valuable time to recoup after every league encounter to be able to maintain their aspirations until May.

As for bottom dwellers Spurs, their seemingly slim survival hopes have been revived after their famous league win over AmaZulu last time out.

The 16th-placed Urban Warriors won only their second league game of the season and now sit six points away from their closest competitors, Richards Bay.

Head coach Ernst Middendorp admitted to his squad not possessing enough quality in depth before the mid-season break, which led to the club roping in a few new faces in the transfer window.

Middendorp may not even have fancied a crack at the Nedbank Cup given his current worries.

Spurs will now turn their attentions to TS Galaxy, whom they face in the league next week, while City welcome Matsatsantsa to the Mother City on Wednesday.

Related Topics:

SoccerNedbank Cup