Kaizer Chiefs Under-17s were edged 2-0 by title holders Club Brugge from Belgium in their first group stage match at the Future Champions Gauteng International Tournament.
“They were physically the stronger side,” coach Ace Khuse mentioned after the match. “Besides that, they didn’t allow us to play from the back, pressing us high on the pitch.
“As a result, we had to play the long-ball going forward, which is exactly what they wanted.”
Khuse also pointed out that the score could have been higher, if it wasn’t for goalkeeper Bontle Molefe, who was simply outstanding.
Another player who did well was Aden McCarthy in defence.
Chiefs’ Under-17s coach, however, isn’t despondent. “The next match is on Tuesday already. We simply have to win that encounter.”
Amakhosi’s opponent on Tuesday, 26 March, will be Beijing Sinobo Guoan FC. The Chinese side also lost their opening round 2-0, against Mexican side Club Tijuana, so much will be at stake. The match will kick off at 13:00 at the Nike Centre in Pimville, Soweto.
“There are still two more games to play before the playoff rounds,” concluded Khuse. “I am optimistic that we will be able to qualify for the semis.”