Soweto Derby make or break?

2015-03-04 15:13
Soweto Derby (Supplied)

Cape Town - The Soweto Derby always proves hugely important for Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates, but Saturday's installment could have a massive bearing on the outcome of the season - for both teams.

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Just two weeks ago, Amakhosi fans were already preparing to welcome the Premiership title back to Naturena as the Glamour Boys held a 15-point lead at the top of the standings after having gone undefeated in 19 league matches.

However, worry started creeping in following the 2-0 defeat at SuperSport United last month, and those fears have since been compounded after Bidvest Wits' 1-0 win over Mamelodi Sundowns on Tuesday took the Students to within seven points of Chiefs.

Stuart Baxter's men do, however, have a game in hand, which they will play against Ajax Cape Town on Wednesday, meaning they could move back to the relative safety of a 10-point advantage, should they see off the Urban Warriors at the FNB Stadium.

However, defeat this week - or even a draw - could open the can of worms Chiefs have so desperately been trying to avoid this term as they prepare for the biggest game on the South African calendar on Saturday, against bitter rivals Pirates.

The Sea Robbers have managed to overcome a disappointing start to the campaign as they are undefeated in their last seven league outings, winning five of those, including their last four in a row.

That run has left Eric Tinkler's men fourth in the standings, and although they trail Chiefs by 12 points, the belief is well and truly flowing through the Buccaneers, who might just be smelling the blood in the water.

It is not only what the result could do for Chiefs and Pirates that matters, though, with Wits and Sundowns also expected to have their attentions glued to the Soccer City encounter.

However, favour still remains very much with Chiefs in the fixture, with the gold half of Soweto having taken bragging rights in the 147th Soweto Derby, in December, after cruising to a 2-0 victory.

That made it 65 Chiefs wins to Pirates' 35, while Amakhosi have now also scored 201 times against the Bucs, compared to their 158.

So, while defeat for the Glamour Boys this weekend could indeed spell disaster in their title quest, Soweto Derby victory number 66 could be all Baxter's men need to inspire them all the way this term and snatch back the title they conceded to Sundowns last term.

Read more on:    orlando ­pirates  |  kaizer chiefs  |  psl  |  soccer

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