Is there something wrong with Kaizer Chiefs? Are the
wheels coming off the once well-oiled machine?
The Glamour Boys of South African football, started
the 2014/15 season like the proverbial house on fire.
They demolished everyone that crossed their path.
This smooth run saw them maintain a 100% record in the league and even went on
to lift the MTN8 Cup via a 1-0 victory over arch-rivals Orlando Pirates.
This victory was achieved despite the absence of charismatic
and talismanic captain Itumeleng Khune. In that final, greenhorn goalkeeper
Brilliant Khuzwayo played a blinder and established himself as a worthy deputy
When the club was riding the crest of the wave, their
died-in-the wool supporters even circulated an international log titled
"World Football Combined Log
2014-15" that showed that Chiefs' record was better than the other leaders
of top leagues in the world.
At the time, all these clubs had played eight matches
apiece. Chiefs had collected 24 points while Spanish La Liga toppers Barcelona
and English Premiership pace-setters Chelsea were on 22. Germany's Bayern Munich
were on 20 while Juventus led the Italian Serie A with 19 spoils.
However, chinks have started showing in the Amakhosi
While they still remain unbeaten in the league, they
have thrown away six points in playing three successive draws to Moroka
Swallows, Mamelodi Sundowns and Polokwane City.
And in-between, actually after the first draw against
Swallows, they suffered their first loss of the season when they were
eliminated out of the Telkom Knockout Cup by Platinum Stars via a penalty shootout.
Those close to the club - their management and
supporters - would surely say there is no need to press panic buttons. But the
thing about football is that you will never know what's next.
Chiefs might rise from this lull like a phoenix or the
downward spiral might continue.
They might be consoled by the fact that their bitter
rivals Pirates - whom they meet in the Soweto Derby next Saturday - are also not firing from all cylinders. After
a nail-biting 2-1 win over SuperSport United on the weekend, they came unstuck
against Pretoria University being held to a goalless draw, a result that kept
them 12 points behind Chiefs.
On the other hand, Ajax Cape Town made hay by beating
Bloemfontein Celtic by a solitary goal thus cutting Chief's lead to nine
points. Mind you, nine points is equal to just three games.
As we enter the crucial Christmas period which will
bring us to the halfway mark, the Chiefs faithful will be holding their breath
hoping that their beloved side starts remembering how to win matches.
But the neutrals must be enjoying what is happening
because it is sometimes boring when one club just gallops way ahead of all the
The previous Premier Soccer League (PSL) seasons have
spoiled us soccer lovers by being humdingers that produced breathtaking photo
Will Chiefs continue to run away with it or will we
see them being halted and witness another cliffhanger come May? The December
fixtures that include the postponed Soweto Derby should give us a clearer
Let me take this opportunity to wish SuperSport United
and Platinum Stars Good Luck in the Telkom Knockout Cup final on Saturday.
S’Busiso Mseleku is regarded as one of Africa's leading
sports journalists and an authority on football. He has received some of
the biggest awards in a career spanning well over 20 years. He is
currently City Press Sports Editor.
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