For The People

Chiefs Put in Stellar Performance

Goals from Ekstein and Zuma sealed the Amakhosi’s place in the semifinals of the Nedbank Cup. The Glamour Boys are one step closer to ending their trophy drought after defeating Cape Town City 2-0 at the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit on Sunday.

Pule Ekstein scored in the 30th minute while Dumisani Zuma added the second early in the second half in a clever tactical performance by Chiefs. Kaizer Chiefs dominated the quarterfinal tie and the scoreline should have been more reflective of their performance. Chiefs have not won a trophy for almost four seasons now but the Glamour Boys made their intentions clear early in the tie.

George Maluleka’s early shot forced City goalkeeper Peter Leeuwenburg into a leaping save as he pushed the ball over his crossbar in the fifth minute. Khama Billiat had a shot saved just before the quarter-hour mark before the goal came in the 30th minute. Defender Edmilson tried to cut inside with the ball, lost possession to Bernard Parker, who then drove into the penalty box before squaring for Ekstein who finished the attempt with the help of a deflection. City were on the back foot throughout the opening exchanges and only got their first effort on goal from Riyaad Norodien in the 32nd minute.

The score-line should have been 2-0 five minutes later when Billiat stole away from Edmilson but sent his shot wildly over the top of the bar. Billiat then turned provider just another minute later with a square ball that Ntiya-Ntiya hit against the upright. Maintaining a pattern of being slow to get going in the first 45 minutes, City would have heard the wrath of coach Benni McCarthy at half-time.

Zukile Kewuti struck the woodwork with a header from Surprise Ralani’s cross soon after the break but Chiefs, anticipating City’s all-out attack in the second period, were ready to catch their guests on the counter. It was hereafter when Parker burst away and earned the corner that fell perfectly for the unmarked Dumsani Zuma to score off his knee in the 56th minute. Zuma had come on at the break for Ramahlwe Mphahlele as coach Ernst Middendorp shifted from five at the back to counter-attacking options. The German had his tactics spot on throughout the encounter with Chiefs holding firm at the back for one of their better performances of the season.

The Semi-Final draw was conducted after the match; Chippa United vs Kaizer Chiefs and Golden Arrows vs TS Galaxy. The dates, time and venue have yet to be confirmed.

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