Giovanni Solinas is keen to win some silverware in his first season at Kaizer Chiefs. Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix
One Soweto giant has to bite the dust and one has to advance to the final of the Telkom Knockout when Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates lock horns at Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban on Saturday (3pm kick-off).

The winners will face either Bidvest Wits or Baroka FC in the final on the December 8 at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Port Elizabeth.

Chiefs and Pirates are on an identical mission, both gunning to end their barren run of trophies.

Amakhosi have endured turbulent times in the past three seasons while the Buccaneers have experienced perennial pain for four years.

The mission is clear: Both sides want to end their trophy droughts and have to do it at the expense of one another.

Chiefs haven’t lifted a trophy since 2014/15 when they won the MTN8 and Absa Premiership, while Pirate’s last triumph came in 2014 when they lifted the Nedbank Cup.

Coaches searching for their maiden silverware

Milutin “Micho” Sredojevic is in his second season as coach of Orlando Pirates. Last season he failed to deliver the goods for the Buccaneers. He has already missed out on the MTN8 this season.

But Pirates are on a roll. They are firing on all cylinders but need to decorate that with silverware. Sredojevic will want to get the monkey off his back and win his maiden triumph as coach of Pirates, but Chiefs’ Italian tactician Giovanni Solinas will have a huge say in that.

Solinas is in his debut season with Amakhosi but the pressure is mounting for him. This is a real opportunity for him to ease that pressure and silence his doubters by beating Pirates and going into the final and winning it.

Like Micho, he also missed out in the MTN8.

Milutin “Micho” Sredojevic is in his second season as coach of Orlando Pirates and is looking to win that elusive piece of silverware. Photo: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

Pirates out to keep their unbeaten run in the derby

Pirates haven’t been beaten by Amakhosi for the past three years in all competitions. They will be eager to keep that unbeaten run against their adversaries intact.

And they have already got one over Chiefs this season in the league.

On the other hand, Chiefs will be out to end their winless run against the Buccaneers. Amakhosi’s last victory against Pirates came in the same competition and at the same stage. Penalties were required to separate the two giants when Chiefs prevailed 6-5 in the shootout back in 2015 at FNB Stadium.

Chiefs attack look to find their scoring boots

Amakhosi’s attack has fired blanks in their past three matches and they will be hoping to end their misfortune in front of goals when they meet Pirates.

Khama Billiat netted the consolation for Amakhosi the last time these two sides met. All eyes will be on Billiat, Leonardo Castro, Bernard Parker and Ryan Moon. They are the source of hope and inspiration for Chiefs in-front of the posts.

Chiefs unbeaten against Pirates at Moses Mabhida

Chiefs and Pirates have only met twice before at Moses Mabhida.

Their first meeting was back in 2010 in the semi final of the Telkom Knockout. Amakhosi despatched the Buccaneers 3-0 on penalties after the game ended in a 0-0 stalemate after 120 minutes. Pirates also succumbed to a 1-0 defeat in the final of the MTN8 in 2014.


Sunday Tribune

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