Absa Premiership

Preview: Kaizer Chiefs v Maritzburg

2015-08-05 10:24
Siyanda Xulu (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - There will be plenty on the line at the FNB Stadium on Wednesday evening as Kaizer Chiefs and Maritzburg United lock horns in the quarterfinals of the MTN8.

Besides being the opening game of the 2015/16 PSL season, this week's Wafa Wafa clash comes with added incentives for both sides, the most notable being the fact new Amakhosi coach Steve Komphela faces the team he left in June in what will be his official debut for the Soweto giants.

Chiefs also have aspirations of defending the title they won last year under Stuart Baxter, while the squad will be eager to bounce back from Saturday's Carling Black Label Cup defeat to Orlando Pirates, who once again emerged from the season's curtain raiser victorious on penalties.

The Team of Choice, meanwhile, will be making history as they prepare for their first-ever appearance in the MTN8, having finished last term in eighth place, while Mandla Ncikazi will make his debut as head coach, having taken up the reins from Komphela.

On the team front, there are expected to be plenty of debuts for both teams, with Siyanda Xulu, Sula Matovu, Andiswe Mtsila, Bongani Ndulula and Siboniseni Ngcobo all recently signed by Chiefs, but the biggest name on the team-sheet could be that of Itumeleng Khune, who agreed a return to Naturena only last week.

However, Reyaad Pieterse could again be tasked with goalkeeping duties, having stood between the sticks for the Black Label Cup after Brilliant Khuzwayo suffered an injury on the eve of the encounter.

Camaldine Abraw, meanwhile, is not expected to play any part as Bloemfontein Celtic's complaint against Chiefs' signing of the striker remains unresolved.

For Maritzburg, Kenya international Brian Onyango will be hoping to get the nod after joining on a two-year deal last week, while former Orlando Pirates midfielder Manti Moholo was also snapped up during the current transfer period, although fellow new signing Evans Rusike will miss out as he still waits on a work permit.

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Friday, 19 January 2018
Wits v Bloemfontein Celtic, Bidvest Stadium 20:00
Saturday, 20 January 2018
Cape Town City FC v Ajax Cape Town, Cape Town Stadium 15:30
Free State Stars v Maritzburg United, Goble Park 15:30
Mamelodi Sundowns v Platinum Stars, Loftus Versfeld Stadium 18:00
AmaZulu FC v SuperSport United, King Zwelithini Stadium 20:15
Orlando Pirates v Polokwane City, Orlando Stadium 20:15
Sunday, 21 January 2018
Chippa United v Golden Arrows, Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium 15:30
Baroka FC v Kaizer Chiefs, Peter Mokaba Stadium 15:30
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