We’ve done our homework – Komphela

“We have done our homework on them,” Steve Komphela comments about tonight’s clash against Maritzburg United. “They are an energetic team and play a pressing game under coach Fadlu Davids.”

Kaizer Chiefs face Maritzburg United at Pietermaritzburg’s Harry Gwala Stadium on Wednesday, 20 September (kick-off at 19:30).

Komphela, who coached Maritzburg before joining Amakhosi, gave a hint about his side’s approach to the game. “Look, this is Kaizer Chiefs. We embarked on this trip with one thing in mind, an ambition to win. Given the last two results – winning away against Cape Town City and drawing at home against Bidvest Wits – it’s justified that we are in high spirits.”

“Our tactical approach and formation will never exactly be the same,” Komphela continues. “Of course, we have our DNA, but we also analyse the opponents to see what they bring to the match. I have worked at Maritzburg and they might have changed their personnel here and there, but they basically remain the same team. They are very difficult to beat, especially at Harry Gwala. I know the anticipation and the excitement ahead of a Chiefs visit there. It is a big event and the match will be played at high tempo.”

Unfortunately, Amakhosi have another player added to the already long list of injuries. “George Maluleka is ruled out for three weeks with a thigh strain,” Komphela confirms. “However, we welcome Erick Mathoho back into the squad. ‘Tower’ has travelled with the team.”

It doesn’t mean that Mathoho will immediately walk back into the side. “It is a nice headache to have ‘Tower’ back, considering we played against Wits without cover at the back.”

“We will consider some changes in the midfield area in the absence of ‘Mido’,” Komphela adds, while talking about the absence of Maluleka “We have a choice to go for either like-for-like or change the formation. We are comfortable that we will field a solid line-up that will win the match.”

Remarkably, Amakhosi have scored in all four of their opening league fixtures, netting five times. “It is important to be on the scoresheet,” affirms Komphela. “Equally so, we must not concede goals.”

The Chiefs coach also heaps praise on his players for shrugging off early season jitteriness. “The confidence has always been there. We just needed to brush aside the anxiety. We started eagerly, wanting to begin the season on a high, but lady luck deserted us. I am sure we have now turned the corner.”