The pressure will be on Amakhosi when they lock horns with the in-form Citizens in Cape Town on Wednesday evening
McCarthy has enjoyed an incredible start to his tenure in the Mother City as City are on a five-game winning streak in all competitions, and will be buoyed on by their recent success in the MTN 8 where they booked their place in the final against SuperSport United.
Despite losing arguably their most influential player in Lebogang Manyama, many of City’s other players have stepped up to the plate and Chiefs will need to be wary of Ayanda Patosi’s creativity and a former Chiefs striker who has rediscovered his scoring boots once again in Lehlohonolo Majoro.
However, the international break came at the right time for Amakhosi as they were able to nurse some of their key players back to full fitness. Most importantly, Itumeleng Khune is back in contention and expected to don the No.1 jersey once again in what could be a busy evening for the Glamour Boys goalkeeper. But it really doesn’t get any easier for Steve Komphela as Chiefs find themselves unusually thin on defensive options for the encounter.
While Eric Mathoho will sit out the clash through suspension, it has been confirmed that Tsepo Masilela and Ramahlwe Mphahlele are long term casualties. To add even further salt to Komphela’s wounds another left back in Sibusiso Khumalo is also side-lined for the next three weeks, meaning that new signing Philani Zulu is likely to deputise in the left-back position.
Meanwhile, McCarthy also has a selection headache of his own as midfield stalwart Roland Putsche has been ruled out of the encounter after sustaining a facial injury in the win against Bidvest Wits on Sunday, and his absence will come as a massive blow to City’s plans.
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Nonetheless, Chiefs will be desperate to finally get one over City. In three previous meetings between the two sides in all competitions, City have registered two victories with one encounter ending in a draw.
But this time around, it won’t just be about bragging rights. It has not been an impressive start by Chiefs as they are yet to win a game this season, and with pressure mounting on Chiefs’ head honcho, it remains to be seen whether management’s patience will finally run should the Glamour Boys fail to win.
Nevertheless, no matter the outcome, come game day fans are guaranteed to witness a spectacle of note at the Cape Town City Stadium as one of South Africa’s most exciting teams take on one of the nations’ most successful clubs.