Solinas rues missed chance to close gap

Posted: 12 November 2018 Time: 07:55 am

Giovanni Solinas said Kaizer Chiefs should've taken advantage of Mamelodi Sundowns and Orlando Pirates dropping points after Amakhosi were held to a goalless draw by Chippa United on Saturday.

Sundowns and Pirates played to a goalless draw at Loftus Stadium in the game which kicked off at 15h30 at on Saturday. Chiefs had an opportunity to close the gap between themselves and leaders Pirates when they took on the Chilli Boys at 18h00 at an empty Moses Mabhida Stadium, but they were left frustrated as they dropped points at their alternative home ground. 

Fifth-placed Chiefs, who are five points behind leaders Pirates, couldn't get out of the blocks and they should count themselves lucky as Chippa’s Lerato Manzini failed to bury two chances for his side.

“It’s a pity today we know we didn't get the three points because Sundowns and Pirates played to a draw,” said Chiefs coach Solinas at the post-match press conference.

“This is a situation you can exploit in this game to stay more closer to the top, but it’s football. The league, fortunately, doesn't finish today; we have a lot of games to play. Why not stay confident? Maybe we can win a lot of games, you know. 

“When we have all of our squad available, why not? The league is not over. Yes, [I am a] little bit disappointed because with the three points today we are more closer at the top. But we are Kaizer Chiefs, we still continue fighting also for the league.”    

Solinas, meanwhile, is happy that the suspension of the club playing without supporters is now over, with one game suspended for 24 months on condition that the club is not found guilty of a similar offense.

Amakhosi, who were playing behind closed doors for the second time, were ordered to play three games in Durban without supporters after fans invaded the pitch in the Nedbank Cup semi-finals against Free State Stars in April.   

Since the suspension was imposed, the Soweto giants have failed to win a league game in Durban. They lost 1-0 to Polokwane City in October and were held to a goalless draw by Chippa on Saturday.

“I'm happy we have finished this problem because I don't like [to] play without supporters, this is not football. This is not football.  

''My knowledge for Kaizer Chiefs, we fight for everything. Football is beautiful when we play with the supporters. People celebrate, then that is football, with their support. Without their support, it’s not football. 

''Also, if you check the players, the players don't play in the same energy with the supporters or without, because it’s psychological. Supporters push you. The adrenaline is different when you play with the supporters, and this is very important about the performance because the intensity of the game is different.”

Chiefs will host Pirates in the Telkom Knockout semi-finals on November 24 at Moses Mabhida Stadium. 

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Article by: Robin-Duke Madlala

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