Phakaaathi’s Jonty Mark and Khaya Ndubane give their views on who will win this one, and why.
Why Chiefs will win (Jonty Mark, Phakaaathi Editor)
Steve Komphela’s tenure as Kaizer Chiefs coach has been disappointing thus far, with not a meaningful trophy in the cabinet, and an exit from the club surely on the cards if it stays that way until the end of his third season in charge.
One line of argument in defence of Komphela is that Kaizer Chiefs’ management have hardly supported him well in the transfer market while he has been coach, with too many disappointing purchases bought into the club to mention here.
In January, however, Chiefs finally seem to have come to the party, in realising they need a far better squad if they are to challenge for honours. Leonardo Castro has already shown his worth with a winner against Baroka FC, while Siphelele Ntshangase has also shown touches of class and Kabelo Mahlasela should do well when he recovers from injury.
Chiefs have started 2018 in fine fashion, and go into Saturday’s meeting with Mamelodi Sundowns just five points behind the Absa Premiership leaders. Komphela has also had an edge in recent meetings with Pitso Mosimane, with Amakhosi winning the two Premiership encounters in 2017, both by 2-1 scorelines.
While Sundowns are undoubtedly the most dangerous attacking force in the country, with Jeremy Brockie and Aubrey Ngoma now added to an already fierce artillery, their defence has looked a bit rocky of late, with just one clean sheet in five matches.
Masandawana have also lost three of those games, and I think they will lose another one here, with Chiefs winning 2-1 once more.
Prediction: Kaizer Chiefs 2 Mamelodi Sundowns 1
Why Sundowns will win (Khaya Ndubane, Online Content Manager)
Games between the teams have always produced fireworks and this will be no different.
Chiefs were able to get one over Sundowns in their previous encounter between the sides, but it came down to the surprise inclusion of Siyabonga Ngezana. Ngezana, who was named Man-of-the-Match afterwards, together with Joseph Molangoane neutralised the Sundowns attack, but with Molangoane out due to suspension, there won’t be a repeat of that.
With Chiefs winning their last game against Baroka, Chiefs coach Steve Komphela will in all likelihood field the same starting line-up, bar Molongoane who was red carded in that game.
Komphela is likely to pick Ramahlwe Mphahlele for the right back position. Knowing Pitso Mosimane, he spent sleepless nights during the week analysing Chiefs’ strengths and weakness and will come up with a plan to beat Amakhosi today. I therefore predict a narrow win for Sundowns in this encounter.
Prediction: Kaizer Chiefs 1 Mamelodi Sundowns 2
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