Orlando Pirates were slaughtered by Kaizer Chiefs in an entertaining ABSA Premier League Soweto derby at the FNB Stadium. It was one man, Knowledge Musona, that Chiefs were indebted to with winning the crucial match that keeps Amakhosi in the hunt for the championship, together with Mamelodi Sundowns and Pirates. The Soweto giants took the points and the bragging rights that come with it. He converted a penalty and Klate scored against his own goalkeeper in the first half.
It was a fast paced match and a palatable performance by both sides. It has been a very long time since we saw such a lively derby, something we had missed in years. The passing and ball control was superb and with better finishing, we could have seen more goals and of good quality. Pirates were the main culprits, wasting glit-edged chances especially at the end, and were duly executed by the Chiefs.
Chiefs revenged the MTN-8 semi-final 0-1 defeat at the same venue a few weeks back and gave themselves a psychological advantage, should the teams meet in the Telkom Knockout Cup final. Siphiwe Tshabalala, Reneiloe Letsholonyane and Tinashe Nengomashe were imposing and dominant in midfield to strangle the efforts of Clifford Ngomeni, Happy Jele and Andile Jali. While Musona was red hot, Daine Klate was a disappointment considering he wanted to be a Bafana Bafana regular and Msowoya was erratic in front of goal.
Knowledge Musona was at it again in the 60th minute to kill off the match. The Zimbabwean latched onto a defensive error and raced to beat Munoeeb Josephs, delicately touching the ball over the keeper and heading it home. He was later replaced after suffering an injury, and hopefully not a serious one. The Bucs gave up for a moment after this goal as Amakhosi began to enjoy life and attacking at will. It just depended on them how many goals they were going to put away as the Ghosts were invisible.
Substitutes, Tlou Segolela and Ezemwa Etorugu combined well for the later to blast past Itumeleng Khune in the 75th minute. The goal gave the Happy People the impetus to attack Chiefs who in turn retreated. Sithembiso Ngcobo was very instrumental in pushing Chiefs with his deceptive pace and artistry in keeping the Pirates attacks on check.
Segolela and Mayambela were a thorn in the Chiefs defence after coming in the second half. Khune had to pull fine saves in the dying minutes of the match to deny the Sea Robbers any hopes of an amazing come-back. Chiefs relied on luck at the last minute barrage and Mayambela, Mbuyane and Etorugu were chief culprits in denying Pirates at least a point.
It will be vital for Pirates' title hopes to know that they must beat title contenders themselves than rely on other teams to do it for them. Amakhosi survived to be lunched on by the generous Pirates, who themselves just like wheelburrow robbers.