Johannesburg – There was little time for celebration, according to Kaizer Chiefs captain Itumeleng Khune, as Amakhosi looked to bounce back from a shock league defeat at the weekend.
Chiefs, who had already bagged the Absa Premiership title ahead of the final round of fixtures, went down 1-0 to the University of Pretoria in Nelspruit.
They will square up against defending champions SuperSport United in the Nedbank Cup final in Durban on Saturday Ä the last match of the domestic top-flight season.
“Credit must go to the whole team. We really deserve 1/8the league title 3/8 and we worked so hard for it,” Khune said.
“We're disappointed with this result. It's not how we wanted things to go, but we have to go back and prepare for the final.”
The skipper paid credit to Amakhosi's large fan base. Even away from home, at Mbombela Stadium, they were well backed against the student outfit.
“Our fans deserve to celebrate. They've been great throughout the season,” Khune said.
“Even here, all the seats are gold and black, and all the fans sitting at home, we appreciate the support.
“We have unfinished business, and come 1/8Saturday 3/8, we'll make sure we'll put smiles on their faces.”
Chiefs assistant coach Doctor Khumalo felt they had done well to overcome a few obstacles in the closing stages of the league campaign.
Influential midfielder Reneilwe Letsholonyane was sent off against Golden Arrows in Durban last month, in a controversial decision after a late challenge on Tshepo Liphoko.
Chiefs head coach Stuart Baxter was also shown a red card during his side's victory over First Division outfit United FC in the Nedbank Cup semi-finals.
Baxter was banished to the stands for their last two league matches of the season for making abusive comments towards an assistant referee.
The Glamour Boys failed to win any of their last four Premiership matches, but they had done enough to lift their first league trophy in eight years.
“I thought we did really well, considering we had a few hiccups here and there,” Khumalo said.
“Yeye (Letsholonyane) was red-carded and some of the boys were suspended through yellow cards for bookings,” Khumalo said.
“And our coach was in the stands, but we managed to soldier on.” – Sapa