'Downs’ squad depth unrivalled in SA'

Premiership

Cape Town City coach Eric Tinkler has claimed that no other team in South Africa can match reigning DStv Premiership champions Mamelodi Sundowns' squad depth.

The Citizens reached the final of this year's MTN8 competition on Wednesday after recording a comprehensive 4-0 victory over Swallows FC, and will now face Masandawana in the showpiece final in exactly one month's time.

Tinkler previously guided the club to a famous triumph in the 2016 edition of the competition but has failed to replicate that form in the league, where City currently occupy 11th place in the 2021/22 log standings.

"The important thing is consistency in terms of performances on the field," he told the media when asked how City could translate their cup form into league success. "That's been the Achilles heel at Cape Town City.

"Back in 2016, the key matches to us not having pushed for the [league] title was, we played Baroka, we lost to Baroka, we lost to Platinum Stars, and those teams are teams that you can't be losing to if you're looking to chase the title.

"Those are teams you've got to be collecting maximum points from. So, obviously, that's got to be the focus this season. What tends to happen is that a lot of focus is placed on the big clubs, Orlando Pirates, Mamelodi Sundowns and Kaizer Chiefs, and we tend to sometimes be able to get results against those big clubs.

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"But leagues are won and lost by the smaller teams, by going away and getting a result against Baroka, by going away and getting a result against TTM, that's what's going to win you leagues, you know, going away to Marumo [Gallants], these are teams you need to get results against if you want to be competing for the league.

"Then, obviously, depth. [You need] a lot of depth in your squad because the league is not five or six games like a cup competition. The league is 30 games. It's a long season done over ten months and during that period you're going to have suspensions and you're going to have injuries and it's going to test the depth of your squad.

"I think that's key. We have enough depth in our squad to compete, to compete, but I don't think there is another team in the league that has the depth of Mamelodi Sundowns."

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