“We have prepared well for the game,” says coach Steve Komphela ahead of Saturday’s clash against Baroka FC at Polokwane’s Peter Mokaba Stadium (kick-off is at 20:15). “They have had some recent changes in their team set-up, but we are ready for any challenge.”
Kaizer Chiefs have been on an excellent run, staying unbeaten for nine matches, including last weekend’s 3-0 win over Stellenbosch FC in the Nedbank Cup.
In 2017, the Glamour Boys have collected 11 points from 5 league matches (3 wins, 2 draws). The most recent league game was the Soweto Derby, which finished in a one-all stalemate.
Amakhosi are at present in fourth position on the Absa Premiership, having gained 35 points after 20 games played. Log leaders Bidvest Wits are on 38 points from 19 matches.
Baroka FC, on the other hand, are fighting relegation, being in 16th (and last spot) on the league table. They have 14 points from 20 outings. They have only won two league matches so far this season.
Their run this year, 2017, has been in particular disappointing, having collected two points from five fixtures. To make matters even worse, they only got one point from their last three clashes. Their last league fixture was a goalless outcome against Polokwane City.
This doesn’t mean, however, that coach Komphela and his side will take things easy. “Every team always lift their game when facing Chiefs,” he comments. “They will be a different and dangerous side to play against come Saturday.”
Baroka’s top goalscorers this season are their captain and defender Mzwanele Mahashe and wide midfielder Richard Matloga, both netting four times.
The Polokwane-based side will be without former Amakhosi left-back Punch Masenamela, who is suspended.
Chiefs, meanwhile, will miss out on Brilliant Khuzwayo, who is out with a suspected ankle injury. “He will have a scan today,” says Komphela, “we hope that there’s no serious damage.”
About challenging for the league title, the Amakhosi coach adds: “We take it one game at a time. At the moment, we are fully focused on the Baroka encounter. We are looking for a good result, also to put us on a good footing for April, which will be a deciding month when it comes to who will take the league title.”