It really could have gone either way, but Kaizer Chiefs’ recent run of good form was halted briefly with this goalless draw away to Polokwane City at the Peter Mokaba Stadium on Tuesday night.
There were several chances created – both sides getting their fair share – but they were not taken and this Absa Premiership fixture produced a stalemate.
Perhaps neither Steve Komphela of Chiefs nor his opposite number Bernard Molekwa will moan too much about sharing the spoils following Telkom Knockout cup victories at the weekend.
Amakhosi hardly broke a sweat as they ran riot against AmaZulu on Saturday night in a 3-0 win, while City were pushed all the way into extra time by Ajax Cape Town to progress on the lottery of penalties.
The hosts would have been the happier of the two sides with a draw, given the amount of minutes they endured in the cup clash a few days earlier.
But they could have been in on a surprise win.
Itumeleng Khune kept Chiefs in the game by twice denying striker Rendani Ndou in the second half, while the Glamour Boys’ best chance fell to evergreen Siphiwe Tshabalala, who struck the outside of the post with his ferocious shot using his left boot.
Ndou’s first attempt was from a rebound after Khune had managed to pull off a stunning acrobatic save from Jabulani Maluleke’s header.
The goalkeeper, however, had only been able to punch the ball into the path of Ndou, who had to react quickly to try squeeze in another header into the back of the net, but sent it wide of the goalposts.
His second attempt a few minutes later was a low shot that looked tricky for the goalie, but Khune pushed it away for a corner kick.
Chiefs would have gone joint top of the table – equal on points with log leaders Baroka FC – with victory at the Peter Mokaba Stadium.
The draw, which meant Amakhosi were still unbeaten on the road so far this season, didn’t help Komphela’s men move any further up the table after 10 league matches. They remain in fourth spot, while City are in 11th.
The game wasn’t short of moments that could have turned it, but City are yet to win a home match, and this has been the reason why coach Molekwa has been under pressure and was even on the brink of getting sacked until a few results started going his way.
Both sides face tough encounters in the Telkom Knockout quarter-finals this coming weekend, Chiefs away to Chippa United, who are growing in confidence under coach Teboho Moloi.
City travel to Bidvest Wits and they, too, will feel this will be a tough match for them to negotiate their way to the semi-finals.
There will then be a bit of a lull for PSL sides after the cup matches, with the international break resuming the following week, as Bafana Bafana look to qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russia next year.
They face Senegal twice – the first match being played in Polokwane on November 10 and then in Dakar four days later.