Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates, Free State Stars and Baroka FC all feature in what we learnt this weekend
Posted: 20 February 2017 Time: 20:36
KickOff.com highlights what we learnt from another weekend of Premier Soccer League and National First Division action …
Chiefs can grind out results
Rama Mphahlele has already said it, but Kaizer Chiefs have found the art of grinding out results, winning games despite not necessarily being the best team on the day.
All championship winning teams have to do that sometimes and Chiefs have reignited their league title hopes after a fifth win in succession, albeit with some fortune in their 1-0 success over struggling Highlands Park.
Coach Steve Komphela will know that you don’t have to win pretty, you just have to win.
Mobara can be midfield lynchpin for Pirates
Orlando Pirates rescued a 2-2 draw with a late strike from Riyaad Norodien against Cape Town City on Saturday night, but the fact that they were even still in the game was thanks in large part to Abbubaker Mobara.
Mobara was playing on his 22nd birthday and was simply immense as he shielded his back four against wave after wave of City attacks.
He could not stop them all, but the former Ajax Cape Town midfielder-cum-defender kept his team in the game.
The Man of the Match went to City’s Austrian midfielder Roland Putsche, who was also fantastic on the night, but Mobara stood head and shoulders above the rest.
Baroka are in full-on self-destruct mode
Baroka FC did not play at the weekend, but the news that they have suspended their technical team, bar assistant coach Kgoloko Thobejane, beggars belief.
Newly-appointed head coach Jacob Sakala, first assistant Edward Williams and technical director Mark Harrison will all face an internal DC for an unspecified offence, though reports suggest they had refused to sign a document stating they would win their next four league games or be sacked.
Given that those four games are against in-form Bidvest Wits, Cape Town City and Kaizer Chiefs, as well as a local derby with Polokwane City, it would have been professional suicide for them to sign.
But what the Baroka players do not need is more disruption and they now find themselves with Thobejane back in charge, the very man who was told he was not good enough for the position at the end of last year.
Certainly the Baroka actions, if true as stated, would fall foul of labour laws at the very best, at worst it is a poor attempt to remove employees from their payroll.
Baroka’s rise from the amateur ranks was rapid, perhaps too fast for the club to fully embrace a professional attitude.
Sedywn George will be in the PSL next season …
Royal Eagles striker Sedwyn George took his tally for the season to 17 with a hat-trick in the 3-2 victory over Mthatha Bucks on Saturday that ended a three-game winless run for his side.
The 25-year-old has already booked his ticket to the PSL, either with promotion-chasing Eagles, or via the transfer market.
There is no guarantee of success in the elite league though, he can just ask his current teammate Phumelele ‘Ace’ Bhengu, who netted 24 goals for Thanda Royal Zulu in the 2014/15 season, but then bombed after a move to SuperSport United and is back in the NFD.
The tall George, who is an excellent finisher, will get his shot with his weight of goals simply too many for PSL clubs to ignore as most seek a regular scorer in the top division.
Letsoaka is getting it right at Free State Stars
An excellent, and rare, away win for Free State Stars against Lamontville Golden Arrows brought welcome relief for Ea Lla Koto and completed a fine week for the side.
They were unlucky not to bag full points in the midweek 0-0 draw at home to SuperSport United too, with their form a sign that new coach Serame Letsoaka is finding the right formula.
Stars had won just one of their previous 17 away league games, with that success coming at Bloemfontein Celtic almost a year ago, and had lost each of their last five on the road.
Next up for them is another road trip to KwaZulu-Natal as they face Maritzburg United on Sunday. It would be huge if they could get another three points.