Maritzburg to test depth of Kaizer Chiefs, who are missing key players for KZN clash
Johannesburg – A Maritzburg United desperate for points will test the depth of the Kaizer Chiefs’ squad, which has many key players missing for the club’s trip to KwaZulu-Natal.
Amakhosi will take their good form on the road for a meeting at 8pm tomorrow against the Team of Choice at the Harry Gwala Stadium, in what is expected to be a deafening atmosphere.
Chiefs coach Arthur Zwane has the huge task of finding yet more replacements for regular right backs Reeve Frosler and Dillon Solomons (who are both still sidelined due to injury), after Siyabonga Ngezana picked up his fourth yellow card of the season.
Ngezana’s suspension does not only deny Zwane a chance to pick one of his most in-form defenders, but also prompts a personnel restructuring in order to keep the side’s good defensive momentum.
The Glamour Boys have kept five clean sheets in their last seven matches in all competitions, and look a far cry from the side that shipped in goals for fun in the first round of the campaign.
Ngezana joins the likes of Khama Billiat, Nkosingiphile Ngcobo and Cole Alexander on the list of big misses as Chiefs try to make a valid claim for a CAF Champions League spot.
Club centre-back Zitha Kwinika is Zwane’s most likely man to slot into that vacant right-side defensive position, having alternated with Ngezana in that spot in recent weeks.
However, a Maritzburg side with the support of a home crowd and the pace of the likes of Wayde Jooste and Ali Meza might pose a few difficult questions for Chiefs.
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Amakhosi will seek to complete a treble of wins over the Team of Choice this season and begin a surge up the DStv premiership log standings.
The Naturena-based club currently sit in fourth position, with 34 points after 22 matches, and faces a Maritzburg outfit fighting for their lives and second from bottom, with 21 points after 22 outings.
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A victory for Chiefs could see them leapfrog Orlando Pirates, who are in third, and move to within two points of second-placed SuperSport United.
One of the few boosts for Zwane will be the return of Christian Saile Basomboli, who returns from suspension. The Congolese livewire has shown promising signs of being a danger to the opposition, having already scored his first goal against their next opponents.
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