Players get few days off to recover

Hunt praises players, rues his luck after derby defeat

Samir Nurković
Samir Nurković
Image: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

Despite yet another Soweto derby defeat, hard-to-please Kaizer Chiefs coach Gavin Hunt has taken positives from their DStv Premiership loss to Orlando Pirates.

The 56-year-old mentor is usually critical of his charges whenever they lose a game. But the four-time championship-winning coach hailed his team for their performance in the derby despite the loss.

The 1-2 defeat to the Buccaneers at Orlando Stadium at the weekend ended their five-game unbeaten run.

Thembinkosi Lorch and Siphesihle Ndlovu were on the score sheet for the home side. Defender Daniel Cardoso scored for the visitors, while Serbian forward Samir Nurković missed a penalty.

Hunt’s charges created the better of the goalscoring opportunities and dominated possession. But football is all about taking your chances, and Pirates converted theirs to win, while Amakhosi fluffed theirs

One of their standout misses came from defender Siyabonga Ngezana, who blasted wide a rebound from Norkovic’s missed penalty. “I am disappointed. We should have won the game as we had more than enough chances,” said Hunt.

“We were unfortunate to lose, and sometimes football does not go for you. I cannot fault the boys as they did their best to win the game,” said Hunt.

Cardoso is the usual penalty taker for Amakhosi, but Hunt told him to stop taking them at training.

Richard Ofori saved Nurkovic’s poorly taken penalty in the second half. “I told Daniel to stop taking penalties and Nurkovic wanted to take it,” said Hunt.

Hunt said he would give his players a few days off. They will work on a few aspects of their game when they return to training. “For the first time this season, we will get a few days off. I took some positives from the game, and we need to pick up the boys and go again,” added Hunt.

Amakhosi host Richards Bay in the Nedbank Cup first round at FNB Stadium on Sunday (5pm).

First round fixtures

(5pm unless stated)

Wednesday: Polokwane City v Steenberg, Peter Mokaba Stadium; Sundowns v Stellenbosch, Loftus

Thursday: Bizana Chiefs v CPT Stars, 3pm, King Goodwill Zwelithini Stadium; Tshakhuma  v SuperSport,  Thohoyandou

Friday: Pretoria Callies v Royal Am, Lucas Moripe Stadium, 3pm; Maritzburg v Sekhukhune, Harry Gwala Stadium, 5pm

Saturday: JDR Stars v Pretoria University, Giant Stadium, 3pm; Pirates v Uthongathi, Orlando, 3pm; TS Galaxy v Sporting, Ellis Park, 3pm; CPT City v Celtic, Cape Town Stadium; Arrows v AmaZulu, Sugar Ray Xulu Stadium

Sunday: Swallows v Cape United, Dobsonville, 3pm; Chippa v FS Stars, Nelson Mandela Bay; Cosmos v Leopards, Olen Park, 3pm; Chiefs v Richards' Bay, FNB Stadium

Monday: Baroka v CPT Spurs, Peter Mokaba Stadium

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