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Why Middendorp won German Derby

Ernst Middendorp, coach of Kaizer Chiefs.
Ernst Middendorp, coach of Kaizer Chiefs.
Image: ©Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

It was dubbed the German Derby as Ernst Middendorp went head-to-head with his compatriot Josef Zinnbauer.

Gomolemo Motshwane looks at the five reasons the result went the way of Amakhosi at the packed FNB Stadium on Saturday.


1. He was practical like a BMW five series: practical and able to hit the accelerator at the right moments. They managed the game better without needing much of the ball.

2. As the more experienced coach, Middendorp did not go full throttle and tried to match Bucs' expansive style of play.

3. Some may feel that he parked a bus in the match but they were well organised and did well to soak up the pressure from the opposition.

4. Before the match there was debate about whether to field Daniel Akpeyi or Itumeleng Khune. In the end he went with Akpeyi and was vindicated. Middendorp was brave and stuck to his guns on the Nigerian international.

5. Chiefs threatened to score more goals on the counter attack. There was a moment where Khama Billiat could have doubled the lead.


1. His team played like a Mercedes Benz CLS 63 but they didn't know what to do with all that horsepower. Pirates dominated ball possession but could just not get the ball in the back of the net.

2. The younger German can be proud of the performance of his players on the day. They played an exciting brand of football on his derby debut.

3. A concern is perhaps the inability of his bench to change the game when things are not going according to plan.

4. He should avoid overdependence on striker Gabadinho Mhango. The team still needs to be able to win when Mhango has a rough patch.

5. The former midfielder should have introduced Tshegofatso Mabasa earlier in the match. The former first-choice striker has been crossing fingers to get a chance to play again. 

Amakhosi XI dazzled in Soweto Derby 

With goalkeeper Daniel Akpeyi putting in a perfect shift to inspire Kaizer Chiefs to a 1-0 league win over their traditional foes Orlando Pirates at the weekend, Sihle Ndebele reviews the performances of the Amakhosi XI (they are rated out of 10).

Akpeyi (10)

The Nigerian international produced a number of impressive saves to keep Chiefs in the game. It was probably his best game ever in Amakhosi shirt.

Daniel Cardoso (6)

Apart from unnecessarily kicking the ball forward even when he could have simply played it into good spaces, Cardoso's technical awareness frustrated Bucs forwards.

Mulomowandau Mathoho (6)

His only foible was missing a glorious opportunity from a corner kick. He kept the likes of Gabadinho Mhango and Vincent Pule at bay.

Kgotso Moleko (5)

On a number of occasions, especially in the first-half, Moleko lost his footing and failed to contain Mhango and Pule on the right flank.

Reeve Frosler (7)

His persistence and pressing saw Bucs defender Mthokozisi Dube lose possession before Manyama's goal.

Willard Katsande (5)

Katsande committed avoidable fouls in dangerous places, resulting in a series of threatening free kicks.

George Maluleka (8)

He was instrumental in calming things down in the middle of the park. Maluleka hardly lost possession.

Kearyn Baccus (4)

He was Amakhosi's weakest link. Baccus lacked that stamina required from a playmaker.

Lebogang Manyama (9)

On top of netting the decisive goal, Manyama had a brilliant game. He was Chiefs' reference point when they started attacking.

Leonardo Castro (5)

Before he was subbed earlier in the second period, he kept on dropping back to the right flank to collect the ball for his partner upfront Samir Nurkovic.

Nurkovic (5)

"Kokota Piano" was never on song. But his aerial strength still unsettled the Bucs' rearguard a bit.

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