Chippa big threat to Chiefs’ hat-trick bid


Sowetan - - Dipapadi - By Mark Gleeson

Af­ter Kaizer Chiefs coach Gio­vanni Soli­nas saw his side lose the derby last month, he in­sisted that the team was still ca­pa­ble of put­ting to­gether a string of pos­i­tive re­sults and climb­ing their way up the ta­ble.

Now af­ter suc­ces­sive 1-0 wins over Su­perS­port United, al­beit in the Telkom Knock­out quar­ter-fi­nals, and Black Leop­ards on Wed­nes­day, Chiefs go be­hind closed doors again in Dur­ban to­mor­row look­ing for a trio of suc­cesses when they host Chippa United.

It will be a third game in six days for Chiefs, whose re­sources are be­ing stretched and who are, as Soli­nas is quick to ad­mit, still far from the fin­ished prod­uct.

But they are show­ing the guts and de­ter­mi­na­tion that he says he has been de­mand­ing to go along with the at­tack­ing flair which he wants the side to dis­play.

“First choice for us is to play beau­ti­ful foot­ball and win, but if we are tired and fa­tigued then it re­ally doesn’t mat­ter how we play, as long as we get the points,” he says.

Pun­ters who have been re­luc­tant to put cash on Chiefs af­ter their slow start to the sea­son might be tempted now to back the side. But Soli­nas sug­gested that the game against Chippa will be a lot tougher than the nar­row 1-0 win they eked out in mid­week over Black Leop­ards, who were frankly bet­ter than them.

He says Chippa are a bet­ter side than Leop­ards and dan­ger­ous on the at­tack as they dis­played when they dom­i­nated Or­lando Pi­rates away in their cup tie last month.

It won’t help Chiefs’ cause to­mor­row that there will be no fans to back them. No spec­ta­tors are al­lowed as the last part of the club’s pun­ish­ment for the ri­ot­ing at the Dur­ban venue last sea­son.

Chippa, how­ever, are a team that hasn’t got the ex­pected re­sults since Eric Tin­kler was brought in to im­prove their per­for­mances and al­ready there is talk of an­other man­age­rial change in the off­ing.

There are sev­eral other im­por­tant games in the Premier Soc­cer League this week­end, no­tably cham­pi­ons Sun­downs pit­ting their un­beaten league record at home against Pi­rates and lead­ers Bid­vest Wits at home to tricky Bloem­fontein Celtic. They are mouth­wa­ter­ing con­tests for TAB soc­cer pools’ play­ers with po­ten­tially big re­wards who cor­rectly fore­cast the out­comes.

Gio­vanni Soli­nas.

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