Absa Premiership

Chiefs star could miss Soweto derby with injury

Ramahlwe Mphahlele (Gallo Images)
Ramahlwe Mphahlele (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Kaizer Chiefs could be without right-back Ramahlwe Mphahlele for Saturday's Soweto derby against Orlando Pirates after he picked up an injury for Bafana Bafana.

The full-back lasted just 56 minutes in the 1-1 draw with Paraguay in the Nelson Mandela Challenge last Tuesday after he was taken off with what appeared to be a groin injury.

Bafana Bafana coach Stuart Baxter said he was highly concerned with keeping his players injury-free during the international break, and he had no hesitation in taking 'Rama' off once he signaled he had a niggle.

He said: "We've tried to show respect to the clubs in terms of trying not to overload the players [with training and game-time throughout the camp].

"In a perfect world, the players that are going to play in the Derby, you'd like to pull out a little bit earlier instead of overloading them, but this is the national team and we can't always do that.

"We're not trying to win a popularity contest, we've got to try and win games for the nation as well. So, Rama's got a slight strain and as soon as he flagged it we pulled him off.

"I told him as he was walking up in the second half, 'If you feel anything, you're coming off,' and so he did. He flagged it straight away, and because he overextended himself, he felt it. I don't think it is a bad one but that will be up to the medics now to give a report to Chiefs and they'll reassess him."

Amakhosi are set to face the Sea Robbers on Saturday in the much-anticipated Telkom Knockout semi-final at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban.

Kick-off is at 15:00.