22 September 2018
Kaizer Chiefs (1) 2 (Mphahlele 43’, Ngezana 58’)
AmaZulu FC 0
Kaizer Chiefs easily thumped AmaZulu FC 2-0 in an Absa Premiership match at FNB Stadium on Saturday evening. The goals were scored by Ramalhwe Mphahlele and Siyabonga Ngezane after another convincing display. It was the third victory in a row for the Glamour Boys.
Coach Giovanni Solinas decided to go into this game with basically the same starting XI that beat Cape Town 4-1 last Saturday. Bernard Parker, however, came in for Leonardo Castro, who is suffering from an ankle injury, while Godfrey Walusimbi replaced Siphosakhe Ntiya-Ntiya.
Amakhosi got well out of the starting block and got some early chances to open the score. The best opportunity arrived in the sixth minute when Walusimbi steamed forward over the left flank before delivering a superb low cross to Bernard Parker. But the striker put the ball past the wrong side of the post from short range.
Dumsani Zuma was having a good game, while Parker worked hard up-front. The defence, meanwhile, was solid with Siyabonga Ngezana and Daniel Cardoso forming again a good partnership as the two central defenders.
AmaZulu got a bit more into the game after the first 15 minutes of play, even though it didn’t result in any real goalscoring opportunities.
There was a good crowd that was vocal and supporting the team, which was excellent to see.
Chiefs finally broke the deadlock in the 43th minute. A corner bounced via Ngezana in front of Mphahlele, whose low diagonal shot ended in the far corner, unreachable for the AmaZulu goalkeeper, 1-0.
The first half wasn’t particularly great, but the score was certainly well-deserved.
AmaZulu tried hard to come back into the game, playing a bit more aggressive than in the first half, but again, it didn’t lead to any real chances to equalise.
Instead, Chiefs remained the better side. Lebogang Manyama was another who had a fine performance, while Siphelele Ntshangase, as usual, sprayed the passes around nicely.
The Glamour Boys finally got their second goal in the 58th minute. Khama Billiat brilliantly floated the ball into the box from a set-piece and Ngezana rose high above the opponent’s defenders to glance the ball with his head into the back of the net, 2-0.
AmaZulu coach Cavin Johnson made thereafter two quick substitutions, going for a kind of all or nothing approach.
However, it was Chiefs that looked the more likely side to add another goal.
Coach Solinas made his first change in the 80th minute, bringing on Hendrick Ekstein for Zuma, who by then had run slightly out of steam.
Dax Andrianarimanana arrived six minutes later, replacing Ntshangase, while Gustavo Páez also got a bit of game time, coming on for Billiat.
The performance was maybe not as brilliant as the two wins against Cape Town City and Free State Stars, but it was still more than good enough to fully warrant the three points.
Key moment in the match:
That must be the second goal scored by Siyabonga Ngezana, which gave Kaizer Chiefs the 2-0 cushion they needed. It was a well-taken goal from the young defender.
Most Valuable Player (MVP):
Siyabonga Ngezana not only scored the second goal, which was his second of the season, but he had a great performance in defence. Lebogang Manyana also did well, while Dumsani Zuma again showed his talent, especially in the first half. However, it was Ramahlwe Mphahlele who was selected as the Absa Premiership Man of the Match. The right-back netted the first goal and had an excellent game.
What it means:
It means that Kaizer Chiefs won their third consecutive Absa Premiership and are now in fourth position on the log table with 13 from 8 games, one point less than leaders, Orlando Pirates.
Kaizer Chiefs 11: Khune; Mphahlele, Ngezana, Cardoso, Walusimbi; Zuma (Ekstein 80’), Katsande, Ntshangase (Andrianarimanana 86’), Billiat (Páez 91’); Manyama, Parker
Subs not used: Vries, Booysen, Ntiya-Ntiya, Zulu
AmaZulu 11: Josephs; Sikhakhane, Gumede, Nyongo, Mabiliso; Ramphela (Karuru 52’), Vilikazi, Ncube (Tade 63’), Ncobeni; Sithebe, Ntuli (Khenyeza 60’)
Subs not used: Mbatha, Slawula, Darpoh, Cele
Kaizer Chiefs will face Highlands Park on the road in an Absa Premiership fixture at Tembisa’s Makhulong Stadium on Tuesday night, 2 October 2018 (kick-off is at 19:30).