Chiefs target season double
Arthur Bartman (Gallo Images)
Johannesburg - Kaizer Chiefs' stand-in goalkeeper Arthur Bartman believes teams will fight to the end in deciding the Premier Soccer League (PSL) title winners this season.
Bartman was speaking in Johannesburg at the Nedbank Cup quarter-final draw where Chiefs were pitted against high-flying Free State Stars.
Chiefs have the opportunity to win silverware in both the PSL and in the Nedbank Cup.
"We are going all out for both cups. We lost out on the Telkom Knockout, we lost out on the MTN8, and hopefully we can win these two to make our supporters happy," Bartman said.
"The league is going to be really tough. I think its going to go down to the wire, but we just take it one game at a time and try keep in touch with the log-leaders."
Bartman said they are shifting their attention to the league, where they have the chance to go second when they take on Black Leopards on Tuesday at FNB Stadium in a repeat of Amakhosi's Nedbank Cup last 16 fixture on Saturday.
Chiefs, who are fourth in the league standings, have a game in hand over the top three teams in the league, and have a superior goal difference to second-placed Orlando Pirates.
They will move to 40 points if they win on Tuesday, while Pirates are also on 40 points and play their next fixture on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, Black Leopards took a big step toward premier league survival when they beat Santos 2-1 last Wednesday to move four points clear of the relegation zone.
Bartman said Tuesday's game would be a tough test for Chiefs as Leopards were fighting to stay in the PSL.
"It's going to be a different ball game all together to the cup match on Saturday, but we are going to go there with the same mentality, and that is to win the game," Bartman said.
Leopards will be keen to improve on Saturday's outing, where Amakhosi striker, Lehlohonolo Majoro, guided his side to a 4-0 win, scoring all four goals.
They currently occupy 14th place in the league with 20 points, four points adrift of Maritzburg United, and a point ahead of Santos, who host Platinum Stars at the Athlone Stadium on Wednesday.
Bartman confirmed that he would be in goals on Tuesday, as injured skipper, Itumeleng Khune, had not recovered from a head injury he picked up against Golden Arrows in their 0-0 league draw last Wednesday.
"Itumeleng is doing well, he's got to rest for the next five to 10 days. I wish him a speedy recovery," Bartman said.
He was happy with Lehlohonolo Majoro's form in front of goal, but said Chiefs could call on a host of players to score goals.
"Well, we've got [Bernard] Parker and a few others, but at the moment the coach is happy with Majoro and so am I.
"He has worked hard and if he can keep that form up, we stand a good chance to challenge the title leaders."
The premier league fixture between Chiefs and Leopards is the only game on Tuesday, with the rest of the teams in action on Wednesday.