WILL HIGHLANDERS REDEEM THEMSELVES IN DERBY?

WILL HIGHLANDERS REDEEM THEMSELVES IN DERBY?

It is hard to tell if the derby between sworn rivals Mbabane Highlanders and Mbabane Swallows is a blessing or a curse for the troubled black and white camp. Until their loss in the Ingwenyama Cup final to party poopers Young Buffaloes, Highlanders looked the part, with some pundits even suggesting they were favourites going into the game. Both finalists’ league encounters had ended on draws, and who would have imagined that Highlanders would lose by a landslide 4-1? While not at their best for a long, long time, Mbabane Swallows have played two international friendlies that certainly have been major confidence boosters, while their crosstown rivals are still leaking their
wounds, with a serious leadership crisis as coach Saul Chaminuka remains estranged. If past head-to-head results are anything to go by, Highlanders are underdogs going into the derby come MTN Yello Sunday this weekend. The question whether or not they will be able to restore their lost pride does not seem to be on the lips of neutrals,
who would advise the team to go out there and avoid further damage. The mighty bull has a lot at stake going into this game, not only do they have to redeem their name but they also have to try and put an end to Swallows’ dominance and take away their bragging rights. Speaking to this publication, Highlanders’ PRO Paul ‘Magidza’ Masilela said as a team they had regrouped from their last game and were focused on the remaining games of the league, which they wanted to win. “Our main focus now is on the game at hand against Vovovo FC, which will be
played on Wednesday ahead of the derby on Sunday,” continued Masilela, who also emphasised that all their
remaining games were important, and the team would be treating them with all the respect they deserved. He
said there no longer existed any small teams, explaining that their approach was to treat all teams equally. On the
other hand, Mbabane Swallows PRO Jackson Dlamini said, “We want to win all our remaining games, and this means our journey has to pass through Mbabane Highlanders.” Dlamini said the spirit was good in the team following their good
performance in the recent international friendlies. Coach Nyanga ‘Crooks’ Hlophe has also expressed confidence in his charges who are rearing to go. Mbabane Swallows will take on Tambuti F.C in a midweek encounter ahead of the derby on Sunday. Dlamini said they were under no pressure as they intended to take everything in their strides.

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