Baxter breaks pirates duck!!
Kaizer Chiefs coach Stuart Baxter celebrated his first ever ABSA premiership win over Orlando Pirates with a famous 1-0 victory during Saturday’s Soweto Derby at the FNB Stadium.
Amakhosi went into the match on the back of a demoralising 2-0 midweek loss to Platinum Stars. Add to this the fact that they would be without Captain Itumeleng Khune, who remains side-lined due to injury, and you’d be forgiven for thinking that Pirates started Saturday’s sellout as slight favourites. Baxter showed trust in the young goalkeeper Ziaad Pieterse handing him his second start in the space of a week. The 22-year old did not disappoint making some brilliant saves in the early stages of the game when Pirates were piling on the pressure.
Baxter reverted to the normal 4 at the back, which allowed Chiefs some creativity in the middle of the park with stand-in captain Sphiwe Tshabalala dictating terms. Chiefs started the slower of the 2 sides, they seemed shaken by their defeat to Dikwena but came back strongly in the second half and scored the winning goal to claim all three points.
Looking at the performance of the two giants of South African football on the day, it was not too hard to see why the national team has been struggling, the game was characterised by school boy errors, with both teams giving away the ball very cheaply. It was also not difficult to see why Knowledge Musona did not crack the whip at Hoffeinheim, he had plenty of chances to burry pirates but his finishing was disappointing to say the least.
The only positives to come out of South Africa’s biggest football match were; Pieterse’s performance and the colourfully packed stadium, which showed that we are a nation united in diversity and that indeed we are a footballing nation.