“We want to go through to the final,” Daniel Cardoso says about Saturday’s Telkom Knockout semi-final against Bidvest Wits. “It will be a tough game, but we are ready for the battle.”
Coach Steve Komphela decided to change the tactical formation for Kaizer Chiefs’ game against Mamelodi Sundowns on 17 October. The team played for the first time with three centre-backs – Erick Mathoho, Daniel Cardoso and Siyabonga Ngezana. Amakhosi won 2-1.
Since, Chiefs played four more matches, two for the league and two for the Telkom Knockout competition. Not a single goal was conceded in encounters with Orlando Pirates, Polokwane City (both league), AmaZulu and Chippa United (both cup).
“It’s a good formation,” Cardoso comments, “it works well for us, as we have kept a clean sheet for our last four matches.”
The 29-year-old has been in fine form himself as well. “It’s great to be playing on a regular basis,” he explains, “after having struggled a bit with injuries and suspensions. The coach trusts me and that helps. I am nearing the form that I reached, while playing for Free State Stars. With playing comes confidence.”
Cardoso has also been trying to take charge of the backline, talking a lot to his fellow defenders. He smiles when asked the question, “My hands are sometimes all over the place, guiding everybody to be at the right place at the right time. I love it though.”
The centre-back prefers not to talk too much about Chiefs’ chances to reach the Telkom Knockout final. “We have been talking a lot amongst ourselves about it. It provides us with an opening to win a trophy and that’s something we need – for the club, for the players and for our supporters. The Wits match won’t be easy. However, we are one game away from the final and we need to grab that opportunity with both hands.”