Ajax Cape Town v Chiefs Preview

ABSA Premiership | Sunday 19 October | Cape Town Stadium | 15:30





The Absa Premiership returns to our screens this weekend with a cracker of a match lined up as league leaders Kaizer Chiefs travel to Cape Town to face second place Ajax in a top of the table clash.

To Win (90mins)
Ajax 18/10
Draw 21/10
Chiefs 14/10

AJAX CAPE TOWN


Ajax have made their best start to a Premiership season in seven years. 

The last time the Urban Warriors found themselves in the top two after six games was in the 2007/08 season, when they went on to finish the season as runners-up to SuperSport United. 

The Cape Town side have made a superb start to the league under coach Roger De Sa, going six games unbeaten from their first six matches, losing only their last league encounter. 

The Urban Warriors have performed above expectations as De Sa has had to put faith in a young team due to lack of funds to bring in big name players. 

Ajax trail log-leaders Kaizer Chiefs by seven points, having already notched-up 14 points, but have a perfect opportunity to close that gap to four points here. 

After suffering their first league loss to Mpumalanga Black Aces, 1-0, Ajax were drawn to play the same opposition in the Telkom Knockout two weekends back. 

Burly striker Thabiso Nkoana scored twice as Ajax eased into the quarter-finals with a 3-0 revenge win over Aces at the Cape Town Stadium. 

Young defender Abubakar Mobara added a third with 15 minutes left as the Urban Warriors proved too canny on attack and too full of energy across the park for Black Aces. 

They were the better side from the start and with pacey Nkoana up front, ran the Black Aces defence ragged in the intense heat of the Mother City, which was so overpowering that a water break was needed for the players in the first half. 

The 21-year-old striker is looking an inspired signing on loan from SuperSport United after taking his tally to five goals in his last five starts for Ajax. 

Having been frozen out at Matsatsantsa, he is enjoying playing in an Ajax side that uses three forwards and offers plenty of support. 


KAIZER CHIEFS


Kaizer Chiefs’ magnificent run of 12 wins in a row this season, during which they have scored 21 goals and conceded just twice, has ushered them into the best winning spell (equal with Sundowns) in all local competitions since the start of the modern day PSL in August, 1996. 

Chiefs have won their opening seven league games, recorded four victories on their way to lifting the MTN8 trophy and have another win in the bag in the Telkom Knockout, which has left fans of the country’s most supported football club in paradise and sensing a historic clean sweep this season. 

While just a quarter of the league campaign has been played to date, Chiefs have already opened a seven-point lead at the top and are guaranteed of their place there until at least a third of the season has been played at 10 games. 

What has made Chiefs’ run remarkable is the fact that they have kept clean sheets in 10 of those 12 games with Mpumalanga Black Aces and University of Pretoria standing out as the two clubs that have been able to breach Amakhosi’s defence, which has gone for the past four games minus inspirational goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune. 

Baxter, heavily criticised on social networks for dropping MTN8 final Man of the Match Brilliant Khuzwayo and sticking young Reyaad Pieterse in goal for the injured Khune, appears to know exactly what he’s doing as has built up a squad with depth capable of producing throughout the season. 

Up front, he perseveres with the slightly uncomfortable but effective Kingston Nkatha, while relishing the full fitness of Bernard Parker, who scored the only goal in Chiefs’ 1-0 Telkom Knockout victory. 

Katlego Mphela is also set to return from injury to give competition to Parker and Nkatha. In midfield, he can fiddle around: either of the Georges, Lebese or Maluleka; Reneilwe Letsholonyane, Mandla Masango, Simphiwe Tshabalala, Siyabonga Nkosi are all options while the staggering consistency of defensive midfielder Willard Katsande makes him the first name on Baxter’s starting elevens. 

Sky-scraping centre-backs Eric Mathoho, Tefu Mashamaite and Morgan Gould can launder their clean sheets in front of any one of the three goalkeepers.  

Betting Verdict: DRAW 21/10
The big question is, who will stop Kaizer Chiefs from stretching their winning record even further? This is a fixture they historically do not fare well in. If Chiefs manage to beat Ajax, they will solely hold the record of the longest winning streak in PSL history (15) and be one win short of equalling Sundowns’ record of 11 straight league wins set in 2007. Ajax have fared well at home winning all three league games at the Cape Town Stadium, scoring six goals and conceding just two. In Chiefs’ three away wins they have scored 5 goals and conceded just once. The last time Chiefs won away to Ajax in the league was five years ago during the 2009/10 season with Ajax winning all four league encounters at home since. Chiefs are solid at the back but their excellent run has to come to an end sometime and Ajax are tipped to stop them in their tracks by holding them to a draw.  

Written by Wayde Dorkin for @Hollywoodbets. Follow them both on Twitter and Facebook now! 

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