Amakhosi have an opportunity to give their fans some bragging rights in Soweto when they face Moroka Swallows in their second consecutive DStv Premiership derby at Dobsonville Stadium in Dube on Sunday afternoon.
The previous derby, a disappointing setback against Orlando Pirates a fortnight ago, was immediately followed by the recently concluded FIFA international window, and now the league gets back into full swing this weekend with a mouth-watering encounter between two local rivals.
Interim coach, Cavin Johnson, had the majority of the squad available for training over the past two weeks, with only a few absent on national duty. Striker, Ranga Chivaviro believes they have used the time together productively, as they aim to give their fans something to crow about over The Birds.
“Our preparations have been going well,” he tells www.kaizerchiefs.com as the players concluded their final training session ahead of the match, ”I think the break did us good, allowing us to regroup after our last game and now we just want to get out there and put it behind us. We want to bring our positive energy into the game against Swallows this weekend. Most importantly, we want to be victorious at the end of the day.”
The Amakhosi Faithful have been smarting since Bucs fans reclaimed the bragging rights after a long wait, during which Amakhosi won numerous Derbies, and Chiva and his teammates are determined to avoid a similar fate so soon after the first.
“To win this derby is very important after letting ourselves and our fans down against Pirates. We do not want to repeat that!” he declares emphatically, “We want to pick ourselves up and redeem ourselves in another derby.”
Unusually for Kaizer Chiefs, who tend to play more frequently in evening fixtures, the match is scheduled for a 15:30 kick-off, on what is forecast to be a baking hot Sunday afternoon. However, the weather poses no concern for the athletic forward, who celebrated his 31st birthday during the past week.
“We are used to playing when it’s a bit cooler but we are professionals. We train a lot in the heat, so I don’t foresee it as a problem at all,” he says dismissively.
With all players back in camp and a fully fit squad available to Coach Johnson, Chivaviro assures the Khosi Nation that they are highly motivated to resume their season with renewed energy and a statement performance in a derby match.
“They (the international players) all look good and we are happy to have them back with us, fired up and ready to go for Amakhosi,” he says in conclusion.
The DStv Premiership fixture on Sunday, 26 November at Dobsonville Stadium in Dube kicks off at 15:30.
Tickets for this historical Soweto Derby match between the Birds and the Amakhosi are sold through www.ticketpros.co.za and various TicketPro outlets around the country, including Spar and Boxer supermarkets, Sasol and Shell filling stations, as well as Postnet outlets.
Tickets for adults are R60 and R20 for children.