7 December 2019
Chiefs net five to go past Celtic
Kaizer Chiefs (2) 5 (Nurković 21’, 31’, 61’, Castro 47’, 71’)
Bloemfontein Celtic (3) 3 (Mabena 13’, Tchilimbou 24’, Luthuli 35’)
Kaizer Chief beat Bloemfontein Celtic 5-3 in an enthralling Absa Premiership game at Durban’s Moses Mabhida Stadium on Saturday night, with Samir Nurković netting a hat-trick and Leonardo Castro scoring a brace. The Colombian’s first goal, just after the half-time break, was Amakhosi’s 1000th league goal in the PSL era.
Mulomowandau Mathoho, having served his two-game suspension, and Leonardo Castro were back in the starting line-up, replacing respectively Siyabonga Ngezana and Khama Billiat.
Amakhosi dominated play early on, but it was Celtic that, against the run of play, netted the opening goal thanks to Ndumiso Mabena in the 13th minute.
Thereafter, Chiefs came back well and scored the well-deserved equalizer eight minutes later via Nurković.
The Glamour Boys continued to have most of the ball possession, but it was the visiting team that scored their second goal in the 24th minute, thanks to Harris Tchilimbou.
However, again, Chiefs came back into the game thanks to a Nurković’s header in the 31st minute.
Still, the goals kept on coming in the first half and it was another counter-attacking move from the visitors that resulted in their third goal courtesy of Siphelele Luthuli, who finished neatly from close range, 3-2 for Celtic.
That was also the half-time score. It was obviously a disappointment for the Amakhosi to concede three goals in the first half.
Coach Ernst Middendorp decided to bring on Dumsani Zuma for Bernard Parker at the start of the second half.
The second half was barely two minutes old when Castro headed in a corner taken by Lebogang Manyama in the 47th minute. It was 3-3 in an absorbing match full of goals.
Chiefs continued to be the better side. The fourth goal arrived in the 61st minute when Castro crossed the ball for Nurković to easily tap in the ball into the back of the net.
It was the first hat-trick of a Chiefs player since Bernard Parker’s three goals in a 6-0 win over AmaZulu on 11 August 2012. Interestingly enough, that fixture was also played at Moses Mabhida Stadium.
It was the Serbian’s eighth league goal since joining the Glamour Boys at the start of this season.
Amakhosi wasn’t done yet, and it was Castro who scored again via a header from another corner from Manyama in the 71th minute.
It was the Colombian’s fourth goal this season.
Chiefs were never in trouble after their last goal and it was a well-deserved victory for Amakhosi.
It was the eighth successive league win for the Glamour Boys.
Key moment in the match:
That was the moment when Leonardo Castro scored the equalizer early on in the second half. That’s when Kaizer Chiefs realised they were in with a shot to get the three points.
Most Valuable Player (MVP):
That must surely be the Serbian striker, Samir Nurković who scored a hat-trick to help the Glamour Boys collect the three points. Leonardo Castro, who netted a brace, got close, while Lebogang Manyama was another who delivered a fine performance. Nurković was indeed selected as the Absa Premiership Man of the Match after an outstanding performance.
What it means:
It means that Kaizer Chiefs have collected 34 points from 13 games, continuing to be on top of the Absa Premiership log.
Kaizer Chiefs 11: Akpeyi; Frosler, Mathoho, Cardoso, Sasman; Manyama, Katsande, Baccus (Maluleka 54’), Parker (Zuma 46’); Castro (Ngezana 80’), Nurković
Subs not used: Bvuma, Mphahlele, Ntiya-Ntiya, Kambole
Bloemfontein Celtic 11: Mpoto; Baloyi (Tani 57’), Pfumbidzai, Mahashe, Ngobeni; Potsane (Letsoalo 69’), Phalane, Mashikinya, Luthuli; Mabena, Tchilimbou (Sera 70’)
Subs not used: Chaine, De Jongh, Mangweni, Njoti
Kaizer Chiefs will face Maritzburg United in an Absa Premiership encounter at Pietermaritzburg’s Harry Gwala Stadium on Sunday, 22 December. Kick-off is at 15:30.