PSL

PREVIEW | Orlando Pirates host Kaizer Chiefs in first of two MTN8 Soweto derby clashes

Philani Zulu of Kaizer Chiefs during the DStv Premiership match between Chippa United and Kaizer Chiefs at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on October 27, 2020 in Port Elizabeth, South Africa.
Philani Zulu of Kaizer Chiefs during the DStv Premiership match between Chippa United and Kaizer Chiefs at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on October 27, 2020 in Port Elizabeth, South Africa.
Deryck Foster

The 2020/2021 PSL campaign is set for an exciting cliffhanger in the MTN8 semi-finals as Orlando Pirates host Kaizer Chiefs at Orlando Stadium on Saturday, in the first of two Soweto derby clashes.

Neither side - considered contenders for the league title this season - have started quite as well as they would have wanted to.

Both will be hoping a strong Soweto derby performance will help kick-start their campaign, in addition to securing a place in the MTN8 final.

Buccaneers boss Josef Zinnbauer is already under pressure after a few unconvincing displays in the Premiership. After beating Cape Town City 1-0 to earn an MTN8 semi-final spot, Pirates were held to 1-1 draws in the league by both AmaZulu and Stellenbosch.

Zinnbauer will also need to deal with the fact that Chiefs coach Gavin Hunt knows many of the new Pirates signings, with Thulani Hlatshwayo, Deon Hotto, Thabang Monare, and Terrence Dzvukamanja having played under him.

Many have cheekily now dubbed Pirates as 'Bidvest Wits-lite' in reference to their new signings.

He knows my players exactly, some players were in his team last season and he knows them, he knows their style.
Josef Zinnbauer
Josef Zinnbauer
Josef Zinnbauer (Gallo Images)


For Kaizer Chiefs, Gavin Hunt is still looking to settle in at Naturena and implement his philosophy and winning mentality onto his new group of players to perform at their best.

After the 2-1 win over Maritzburg United in the MTN8 quarter-finals, Chiefs were humbled 3-0 by Mamelodi Sundowns in the league before managing to grind out a 1-0 win over Chippa United on Tuesday.

In my opinion they [Pirates] have got to be big favourites for the league title this season, they really boosted their squad.
Gavin Hunt
Gavin Hunt, coach of Kaizer Chiefs during the 2020
Gavin Hunt, coach of Kaizer Chiefs during the 2020 MTN8 QuarterFinal match between Kaizer Chiefs and Maritzburg United at the FNB Stadium, Johannesburg on the 18 October 2020.


Player to watch

- Gabadinho Mhango (Orlando Pirates)

Last season’s top scorer has looked sharp in the early stages of the new season and he will look to continue his form from the previous campaign. The Malawian managed to get on the score-sheet in a 1-1 draw against AmaZulu and will be looking to be the difference against Chiefs over the two legs.

Gabadinho Mhango of Orlando Pirates during the Abs
Gabadinho Mhango (PA)

- Nkosingiphile Ngcobo (Kaizer Chiefs)

In the young 20-year-old attacker Kaizer Chiefs seem to have unearthed another young gem with a bright future ahead of him. Ngcobo caught the eye in Chiefs’ 1-0 win over Chippa United in their last fixture and will be looking to continue his impressive early form. The youth graduate looks to be very skilful and for a young player, looked to be miles better than everyone on the pitch against Chippa. Ngcobo can announce himself to the entire country with good performances in back-to-back Soweto derbies.

PORT ELIZABETH, SOUTH AFRICA - OCTOBER 27: Nkosing
Nkosingiphile Ngcobo of Kaizer Chiefs with his Man of the Match award during the DStv Premiership match between Chippa United and Kaizer Chiefs at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on October 27, 2020 in Port Elizabeth, South Africa.

What the coaches said:

I think it's a neutral zone for both of us. I don't think anybody has an advantage in experience, it's a game-day and in such special games it's important that the players have a 100% focus, self-confidence and a game-plan to work towards. That's the thing that you have to find as a coach, and then it's always important that the players in the game implement what we want as coaches.
Josef Zinnbauer

They have a lot of players I know and have worked with, so they have a very good squad. But what they do now is not for me to say, I really just focus on what we have to do here. They are much stronger than they were last season. I know what’s ahead of us and look forward to the game.
Gavin Hunt

Kaizer Chiefs v Orlando Pirates head to head:
29/02/2020 - Orlando Pirates 0-1 Kaizer Chiefs

09/11/2019 - Kaizer Chiefs 3-2 Orlando Pirates
09/02/2019 - Kaizer Chiefs 1-1 Orlando Pirates
27/10/2018 - Orlando Pirates 2-1 Kaizer Chiefs
03/03/2018 - Orlando Pirates 3-1 Kaizer Chiefs



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Fixtures
Fri 27 Nov 20 20:00 PM (SAST)
Maritzburg United
SuperSport United
Harry Gwala Stadium
Sat 28 Nov 20 15:30 PM (SAST)
TS Galaxy
Golden Arrows
Mbombela Stadium
Sat 28 Nov 20 15:30 PM (SAST)
Orlando Pirates
Baroka
Orlando Stadium
Results
Wed 25 Nov 20
Bloemfontein Celtic 1
Black Leopards 0
Tue 24 Nov 20
Swallows 1
Kaizer Chiefs 0
Sun 22 Nov 20
Mamelodi Sundowns 4
AmaZulu 3
Logs
Team
P
W
PTS
1. Swallows
5
3
11
2. Mamelodi Sundowns
4
3
10
3. Orlando Pirates
4
2
8
4. Baroka
4
2
7