Chiefs go down to narrow Royal AM loss

Royal AM         (1) 1 ( 21. V. Letsoalo pen 38’)

Kaizer Chiefs (0) 0

A first-half penalty was enough to give Royal AM a narrow 1-0 victory at the Chatsworth Stadium in a tight DStv Premiership encounter today.

The game was decided in the 38th minute when Victor Letsoalo converted a penalty conceded by Bernard Parker, sending Daniel Akpeyi the wrong way from the spot for what proved to be the game’s winner.

The game was an open one, with both teams creating bags full of chances, with Chiefs having some of the best opportunities in the game.

In the opening 10 minutes, Siphosakhe Ntiya-Ntiya curled the ball from the left into the danger zone towards Leonardo Castro, who let it run to Siyabonga Ngezana, who despite being marked by Given Mashikanya was able to get his shot away but unfortunately, it was straight at goalkeeper Patrick Nyame, who made a routine stop.

Chiefs conjured up another chance when Dolly intercepted a pass by Kabelo Mahlasela in the 17th minute and quickly played the ball to Njabulo Blom, who teed it up perfectly for Nkosingiphile Ngcobo, who in turn picked out Dolly again as he continued his run into the danger zone.

Dolly picked out Leonardo Castro, whose effort hit the upright, and allowed Nyame to pounce on it to avert the danger.

While Chiefs had the best chances up to that point, the game turned on its head in the 38th minute when Royal AM were awarded a penalty after Bernard Parker was adjudged to have clipped Zukhile Mkhize from behind in the box.

Letsoalo stepped up and slotted home the ensuing spot kick to put Royal AM 1-0 ahead.

With half time fast approaching both teams again had opportunities to find the back of the net. Parker was able to connect with Reeve Frosler’s free kick in the 42nd minute but headed the ball over the goal from close range.

A minute later Mzwandile Dlamini drove the ball into the side netting from a tight angle from close range on the left, as the hosts went into the break in the ascendency a goal ahead.

The second half began at a frantic pace, with the hosts laying siege early on to Chiefs goal as they played in a number of long, searching balls which had Chiefs defending deep.

In between all of this, though, Dolly was able to make space for himself three minutes after the restart on the left wing, before turning in a cross with deadly precision which Castro though was unable to make contact with as the danger passed.

Chiefs were slowly turning the tide and in the 52nd minute another skillful move from Ngcobo saw him slice the ball with the outside of his left boot, the ball falling to Dolly, who was through on goal but was unable to bring the ball under control, as it bounced past Nyame and his right hand upright for a goal kick.

After coming on for Castro, Khama Billiat proved to be a handful to the home team defence. With twenty minutes to go, he made a darting run down the left and cut the ball across, where Ngcobo came running in.

He was, however, knocked off his balance by Parker, who also attacked the ball and by the time Ngcobo did get his shot away Dlamini had slid in to make a vital block.

The pace of the game was frantic and Royal AM came close to doubling their lead as Ngezana was unable to effectively clear the ball in the 72rd minute and Ndumiso Mabena took advantage, taking the ball off him before passing it off to Letsoalo.

The striker wasted no time in hitting the ball venomously from the edge of the Chiefs 18 yard area towards goal, the ball rifling past Akpeyi and crashing off the cross bar for a let-off for Chiefs.

Despite a gallant effort from Amakhosi, their five-game unbeaten run in league games came to an end. They will now turn their attention to their final league game of the calendar year on the 22nd December at home against Maritzburg United.

Fact of the Game – Khama  Billiat’s appearance was his 100th for Chiefs in all competitions.

Number of the Game 272 – Bernard Parker featured in his 272nd league game for Chiefs. He is now Chiefs’ second highest appearance maker in league games in the PSL era. Only Siphiwe Tshabalala (292) has appeared in more league games since 1996-97 than him for Chiefs.

MVP – Ngcobo continued on from where he left off a week ago against Sekhukhune with a number of deft passes which caught the opposition flat footed. He linked up well with Dolly who made a series of good runs behind the Royal AM backline. Billiat was a welcome introduction, getting quickly involved in the game after coming on as a substitute.

What next – Chiefs are next in action on 22nd December against Maritzburg United in the DStv Premiership.

 

Line Ups:

Royal AM: 16. P. Nyame, 20. Z. Mkhize, 18. G. Mashikinya ( S. Msomi 90+4’), 11. T. Potsane ( M. Masuku 89’), 5. M. Dlamini, 13. S. Manganyi, 24. T. Lingwati, 12. K. Mahlasela, 10. N. Mabena ( M. Sera 89’), 19. S. Matjila, 21. V. Letsoalo ( M. Mahashe 76’).

Substitutes Not used: 31. M. Mpoto, 30. T. Monamodi, 45. S. George, 36. A. Maxwele, 42. J. Ncobeni

 

Cautions: 11. T. Potsane 63’, 24. T. Lingwati 83’

Coach: J. Maduka

 

Kaizer Chiefs: 40. D. Akpeyi, 30. S. Ngezana, 4. D. Cardoso, 29. A. Dube, 36. S. Ntiya-Ntiya, 39. R. Frosler, 45. N. Blom, 12. Nk Ngcobo ( L . Manyama 76’), 10. K. Dolly, 25. B. Parker ( P. Nange 76’), 8. L. Castro ( K. Billiat 61’)

Substitutes not used: 44. B. Bvuma, 17. C. Alexander, 2. R. Mphahlele, 27. Nj Ngcobo, 14. K. Sekgota, 19. H. Mashiane

 

Cautions: 45. N. Blom 23’, 36. S. Ntiya-Ntiya 53’, 4. D. Cardoso 79’

Coach: A. Zwane