Cape Town - According to sportlive.co.za, former Bafana stars Mark Fish and Neil Tovey say Kaizer Chiefs' championship hopes vanished along with Bernard Parker's scoring boots.
“Parker has been the most consistent player in the PSL for the past two seasons and him going off the boil has affected Chiefs", said Fish.
"Some key players like George Lebese also blew hot and cold. And when Knowledge Musona, who started very slowly at the club but gradually became a key player by creating and getting the goals, got injured it was a lot to ask from a thin squad".
The 11-point gap at the top that Chiefs had built, made it difficult for fellow title challengers to catch-up in the early stages of the season, and that temporarily covered up areas of concern which are now beginning to show.
“They never had the strongest squad to begin with. The players Stuart Baxter has been using have played football for 18 months non-stop if you add the matches for the national team. Pirates and Sundowns look like they have a lot more players to do the job. Chiefs’ starting eleven probably can’t wait for the season to end. It is always easier winning the league than retaining it.” Fish continued.
Neil Tovey backed his former 1996 African Cup of Nations-winning team-mate by adding, "Captain and goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune being out and missing a couple of games could have also contributed. For Sundowns, when the injuries came, there are players who stepped up. Teko Modise and Anthony Laffor both came good.”
According to soccerladuma.co.za, Amakhosi midfielder George Maluleka believes that continuing to work hard is the only way forward for the club.
Chiefs face an uphill task in trying to defend their Absa Premiership crown, and are out of all the remaining cup competitions as well.
Nonetheless, the 25-year-old is hopeful that hard work in the remaining games could translate to some success.
He told the club's official website, "Things happen for a reason and we just need to focus on ourselves and win the remainder of our games maybe things will work out for us. We will continue to work hard until the last whistle of the season."
"Our supporters have really been a pillar of strength throughout the season and we really feel bad that things ended this way. The supporters must know that we also love winning things and when we lose we become disappointed, we always try to do our best."The Glamour Boys' next game is against University of Pretoria on Tuesday night.
Kick-off is at 19:30.