Absa Premiership

Kaizer Chiefs v AmaZulu | Saturday 17 March | FNB Stadium | 18:00

This is one of the most one-sided fixtures in the PSL with AmaZulu last beating Kaizer Chiefs in 2007 but their appointment of Cavin Johnson, who has a superb record against Amakhosi as head coach, has suddenly given the KZN outfit the ability to hold their own. There was nothing to choose between these two sides when they locked horns in the first half of the season and the match ended with a share of the spoils as neither team could find the back of the net.

For Kaizer Chiefs, the title race is virtually over as they are eight points off the pace with seven games remaining and AmaZulu are all about fighting for survival and trying to finish in the top eight. Both teams aren’t in the greatest of forms and winning a match of this calibre can be a huge morale booster.

To Win
Kaizer Chiefs 6/10
Draw 24/10
AmaZulu 5/1

Kaizer Chiefs

Steve Komphela’s men are winless over their last two league matches as they followed up a goalless draw with Bloemfontein Celtic with a 3-1 defeat at the hands of Orlando Pirates. However, they managed to narrowly edge Stellenbosch 2-1 in the Nedbank Cup last week to progress to the quarter-finals. Chiefs have conceded more than one goal only on three occasions this season which highlights the strong nature of their defence. Goalkeeper, Itumeleng Khune and centre-back Daniel Cardoso have been rock solid, with the latter producing a Man-of-the-Match performance against Stellies.

Leonardo Castro and Bernard Parker formed a good partnership upfront in absence of regular goalscorer Ryan Moon, who was on the bench. It also has to be said that the team lacks mobility without George Maluleka in midfield and he is not likely to feature as he is still nursing an ankle injury. Another regular starter who didn’t feature last week is centre-back Siyabonga Ngezana and his replacement, Eric Mathoho had a superb showing, crowned with a goal. That will give Komphela a selection headache.

Komphela believes the Nedbank Cup victory will help them forget about the Soweto derby disappointment and play better. “We will take this win to the next match, because after a win one goes to the next match with less pressure.” He said.


After a recent run of three league games without a single victory, AmaZulu now sit in 13th place with 27 points in 23 games. Club owner, Patrick Sokhela was seen confronting coach Cavin Johnson at King Zwelithini Stadium at the end of the match after the team disappointingly got knocked out of the Nedbank Cup by Ubuntu Cape Town, sparking speculation that he might be shown the exit door.

The Nedbank Cup exit might be a blessing in disguise as Usuthu have big teams like SuperSport United and Ajax Cape Town below them. The team has also been charged for contravening the Safety and Security Manual as fans threw objects on the field in their 3-1 defeat at the hands of Mamelodi Sundowns, halting the match for a few minutes.

AmaZulu have four regular starters who have played for Chiefs; Mabhuti Khenyeza, Siyabonga Nomvethe, Camaldine Abraw and Ovidy Karuru. Khenyeza’s experience manifested itself the last time out as he came on and changed the game but unfortunately, they couldn’t complete a comeback against the minnows. On the other hand, former AmaZulu goalkeeper, Brilliant Khuzwayo isn’t expected to start in the presence of the evergreen Khune.

Probable line-ups:

Kaizer Chiefs:  4-2-3-1
Khune; Cardoso, Mathoho, Hadebe, Zulu, Molangoane, Katsande, Meyiwa, Tshabalala, Parker, Castro

AmaZulu: 4-4-2
Pule, Mabiliso, Gumede, Gumede P, Ouro-Akoriko, Darpoh, Mnguni, Morton, Cele, Nomvethe, Khenyeza

Prediction: Kaizer Chiefs Win (6/10)
AmaZulu have a tendency of playing one half and not showing up in the other one. Kaizer Chiefs might not be ruthless enough in front of goal but their team is playing well and they will have a couple of opportunities to hurt the visitors. It will be extremely difficult for the KZN outfit to break the resolute Chiefs defence. The hosts also know how to utilise set pieces to grind out results when teams are evenly matched and there’s no way to score in open play.

Benedict Ngwenya

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