Absa Premiership

Preview: Wits v Kaizer Chiefs

2016-08-23 12:15
Steve Komphela (TEAMtalk)

Two clubs both hoping to challenge for honours this season go head-to-head in their opening league match of the season when Bidvest Wits host Kaizer Chiefs on Tuesday night.

The game at the Bidvest Stadium is set to kick-off at 19:30.

The Clever Boys finished last season in second position in the league standings, 14 points behind champions Mamelodi Sundowns, while Chiefs ended a further 11 points back in fifth spot in what was head coach Steve Komphela's first season in charge.

Gavin Hunt's side has not changed too much, although there have been some noteworthy arrivals in Mogakolodi Ngele, Frank Mhango, Cuthbert Malajila, Darren Keet and Xola Mlambo, while star man Sibusiso Vilakazi left for Mamelodi Sundowns.

Amakhosi coach Komphela, however, has brought in a string of new faces at his club, including Ramahlwe Mphahlele, Keagan Buchanan, Enocent Mkhabela, Zambian marksman Lewis Macha, and Zimbabwean forwards Edmore Chirambadare and Mitchell Katsvairo.

The 49-year-old former Bafana Bafana and Chiefs defender has called upon his players to show more intensity and focus this season as they try to reclaim the league title they won two seasons back.

"We have to concentrate on our own scenario, where we say let's take these 30 matches as 30 cup finals," he told the Sowetan.

"It comes with a lot of concentration and consistency. Expectations are clear. You have to win matches and win trophies. Being number two is not good enough at Chiefs."

Chiefs will go into the game missing two of their most important players - Siphiwe Tshabalala and Erick Mathoho, who are both out injured, while Camaldine Abraw is out for the entire season.

Defender Buhle Mkhwanazi, meanwhile, has cautioned Chiefs that the Students are no longer intimidated by the Glamour Boys' stature.

"I would not say those games are tough. Chiefs, Pirates, Sundowns and Wits can be grouped into one. You can put Wits with whoever is big in the league. There's quality in all these teams," he told the same publication.

"So for us those games will be ordinary games, like playing Baroka or Golden Arrows. It's important to get a result against Chiefs to carry us through the season.

"Sundowns did well last season, but it's a new beginning for every club. We've made a lot of quality signings in crucial positions. I believe we have a well balanced team."

LIVE scoring and interactive commentary of the Absa Premiership clash between Bidvest Wits and Kaizer Chiefs.

Read more on:    kaizer chiefs  |  bidvest wits  |  psl  |  soccer

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The 2017/18 Absa Premiership season is under way. Can Bidvest Wits defend their title? Will Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs or Orlando Pirates emerge victorious? Or will the bookies' favourites, Mamelodi Sundowns, taste success for a record eighth time? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

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