23 September 2017
Kaizer Chiefs 0
Golden Arrows 0
Kaizer Chiefs and Golden Arrows played to a goalless draw at FNB Stadium on Saturday evening. Amakhosi had the better chances, but couldn’t find the back of the net.
Erick Mathoho and Hendrick Ekstein came into the starting XI compared to Wednesday’s 2-0 win over Maritzburg. The lanky centre-back replaced the injured Gordinho (fractured ribs), while ‘Pule’ came in for Wiseman Meyiwa, who was given a bit of a break after having started in the last three matches.
There was a lot at stake for both teams. Arrows obviously wanted to stay on top of the log, while a Chiefs victory would bring the team close to the top of the league table and continue their good run of form in recent weeks.
The first real chance for Amakhosi came in the 15th minute, when Siphiwe ‘Shabba’ Tshabalala gave a beautifully weighted pass to Gustavo Páez. The Venezuelan striker, however, failed to hit the target from close range, with the ball flying past the wrong side of the goalpost.
Arrows, meanwhile, hadn’t travelled to Gauteng to just sit back, often trying to attack in numbers. But Itumeleng Khune continued with his fine form in goal, making a few good interceptions.
After some more great work from ‘Shabba’, Ekstein got the ball just outside the box, but his shot at goal didn’t hit the target.
Chiefs certainly were the more dangerous side when it comes to creating goalscoring opportunities.
Daniel Cardoso did well in defence, while Philani Zulu was again showing his class at the left-back position, regularly moving forward as well.
Páez was at times maybe a bit isolated up-front, but it didn’t stop him from working his socks off, trying to pounce on any ball that came his way.
Coach Steve Komphela decided to bring on William Twala at the start of the second half, replacing Bongolethu Jayiya. The coach was obviously looking for Twala’s speed to put Arrows’ defence more on the back foot.
Páez got another chance not long after the break, but the ball was blocked by the goalkeeper from finding the back of the net.
The game was flowing up and down in the second half and there was more intensity. The pace of the match was also better than during the first 45 minutes.
However, it was unfortunate that Willard Katsande received a yellow card, his fourth this season. It means that the midfielder will miss next week’s encounter against Baroka FC in Durban.
In the end, Chiefs couldn’t find the winner, despite getting numerous good chances to do so. The best of which, in the second half, fell for Tshabalala who made a tremendous effort to jump in front of the defender and head the ball at goal. Sadly enough, the ball flew straight to the goalkeeper.
A set-back was that Khune got injured during the dying minutes of the game and had to be stretchered off with what looked like a concussion. With the three possible substitutions all been used, it was up to Edmore Chirambadare, who had earlier come on for Twala, to take the gloves and go in goal.
Amakhosi probably deserved the three points, looking at the amount of goalscoring opportunities, but it wasn’t to be.
Key moment in the match:
That was probably the moment that Wiseman Meyiwa entered the pitch, replacing Khotso Malope in the 57th minute. It was not that Malope played bad, far from it, but Meyiwa brought something different, winning balls in midfield and spraying the ball around over short and long distance.
Most Valuable Player (MVP):
Siphiwe Tshabalala was selected as the Absa Premiership Man of the Match, deservedly so. ‘Shabba’ was on song, creating a few great chances for his teammates, thanks to some excellent passing, and nearly scoring himself with a header. Tshabalala doesn’t seem to get older, showing fine form so far this season.
What it means:
It means that Chiefs have now collected nine points from six matches – two wins, three draws and one loss. The Glamour Boys are in fourth position on the log table.
Kaizer Chiefs 11: Khune; Mathoho, Katsande, Cardoso; Moleko, Malope (Meyiwa 57’), Ekstein, Jayiya (Twala 46’, Chirambadare 87’), Zulu; Tshabalala, Páez
Subs not used: Khuzwayo, Parker, Zuma, Buchanan
Golden Arrows 11: Gumede; Dube, Mngwengwe, Mzava, Nkombelo; Sibiya (Mutizwa 67’), Cele, Bilankulu, Magubane (Jooste 81’); Mahachi (Sibeko 78’), Lamola
Subs not used: Mbaeva, Molefe, Buthelezi, Dlamini
Next Match: Kaizer Chiefs will host Absa Premiership log leaders Baroka FC in an Absa Premiership match at Durban’s Moses Mabhida Stadium on Saturday, 30 September (kick-off is at 18:00).