Chiefs regain their winning formula

2013-12-01 00:00

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Emphatic victory over Free State Stars boosts league title aspirations.

Amakhosi made their intentions of defending the Absa Premiership title known by this away victory yesterday.

Following straight from an impressive 4-1 midweek win over Polokwane City, this result saw The Phefeni Glamour Boys leapfrog Moroka Swallows and Mamelodi Sundowns to top the league with 21 spoils from 10 outings.

This might be temporary though as The Brazilians and The Dube Butcher Birds lock horns at Loftus Stadium this afternoon.

They go into this clash separated by two points with Sundowns on 20 and Swallows on 18.

After a dour opening, Chiefs broke the duck with seven minutes to go before the break. A free-kick on the left-hand side of their attack, was sweetly swept in by Siphiwe Tshabalala and veteran?Siyabonga Nkosi obliged with a diving header beating a fully-stretched Stars goalkeeper Daniel Agyei.

From the beginning of the second half, Chiefs defence played a very high line thus frustrating the Stars attack force who were caught offside on numerous occasions.

The home side kept on knocking at the door but to coach Steven Khomphela’s frustration, their disjointed play as well as the Chiefs’ defence resilience saw their attacks come to naught.

Itumeleng Khune who has been called to come to Chiefs’ rescue several times in the past, hardly raised a sweat in this game as a resolute back four stood their ground in front of him.

It was former Stars’ player Tshabalala who hammered the final nail into the Free State side’s coffin with a well-taken injury-time goal.

A beautiful pass from Nkosi found Bernard Parker who sent in a peach of a through-ball to Tshabalala?who had no option but to slot the ball into net.

This was Tshabalala’s 200th appearance for Chiefs since joining Stars in 2007, and what a way to celebrate the milestone.

The result should bring some relief to coach Stuart Baxter who was beginning to be under pressure after the expectations created from his first season when the club collected the league plus a cup.

Signs?of cracking under pressure began to show this week when he lambasted his players publicly for complacency.?He blamed them for lacking the hunger they showed last season.

This win should also come as a morale booster ahead of Amakhosi’s?December 10 night encounter against bitter arch-rivals Sundowns.

There will surely be no love lost between the coaches Baxter and Pitso Mosimane who have both made their intentions of winning the league known.

»?In another Absa Premiership match, Pretoria University beat the hot and cold AmaZulu 2-0 at the Tuks Stadium. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

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