Chiefs coast into MTN8 final

2014-08-24 17:37
George Maluleka (Gallo Images)

Johannesburg - Kaizer Chiefs set-up a Soweto Derby meeting with Orlando Pirates in the final of the MTN8 on September 20, courtesy of a 3-0 (5-0 aggregate) victory over Platinum Stars in their second-leg semifinal at FNB Stadium on Sunday.

George Maluleka scored a superb free-kick in the 29th minute to add a third goal to his tally in the semifinals, having already bagged a brace against the defending top eight champions in the first leg.

Amakhosi comfortably knocked out the defending champions in front of an impressive crowd at the iconic arena in Johannesburg.

The result was put beyond doubt 10 minutes after the half-time interval as Reneilwe Letsholonyane slotted home, before Katlego Mphela scored his first of the season in the dying minutes on a chilly afternoon in Nasrec.

Chiefs ensured a second derby meeting early in the season, following the Carling Black Label Cup in preseason, while at least two more derbies await when the fierce rivals clash in the league, home and away.

Pirates booked their spot in the final thanks to a 3-1 (5-1 aggregate) victory over Wits in Soweto on Saturday evening, securing a second successive appearance for the Buccaneers, who lost to Stars in the final a year ago.

Chiefs went in search of the opener from the off but failed to make any impressions after a quarter-of-an-hour, with George Lebese and Siphelele Mthembu both having a go, but none asking questions of goalkeeper Kabelo Dambe.

But when Letsholonyane saw his effort saved and deflected off the crossbar through Dambe's intervention, the hosts looked the deadlier of the two and soon tightened their grip on the game.

Eric Mathoho was brought down in the edge of the area and that was all Chiefs needed to put Dikwena to the sword with less than half-an-hour on the clock.

An in-form Maluleka quickly hovered over the ball before curling a fine right-footed effort into the top left corner of Dambe's goal, handing Chiefs a three goal margin and enough breathing space to start looking forward to the Derby on September 20.

Stars gave Chiefs a scare when Robert Ng'ambi broke through Itumeleng Khune's gloves with a thunderous effort, which bobbled its way towards the line.

Tsepo Masilela, however, dashed backwards and cleared off the line, as television replays revealed referee Chris Mfiki made the right call not to award a goal.

Ahead at the break, Chiefs started the second period much the way they did the first and before long, Letsholonyane latched onto a pinpoint delivery from Masilela, side-footing home for his third of the season and his second in the top eight.

Stars had no reply and disappeared without a trace as they watched their defence of the top eight title fall by the wayside, Chiefs scoring in the second minute of additional time through Mphela, who tapped home and put the game to bed in the best way possible for Chiefs.


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