Jonty Mark

By Jonty Mark

Football Editor

Cape Town Spurs will not just lie down for Kaizer Chiefs

Ernst Middendorp will surely be determined to show his former employers what they are missing.

Kaizer Chiefs are unlikely to be given an easy passage into the MTN8 on Saturday, as they take on Cape Town Spurs at Cape Town Stadium in their final DStv Premiership match of the season.

Chiefs need to win the game to give themselves the best possible chance of finishing in the top eight, though even that may not be enough, if AmaZulu also win at home to Golden Arrows, and manage to overtake the Soweto giants on goal difference in the process.

That it has come down to a final day where nothing is certain – there are actually four teams who could still finish eighth – is testament to how dismal Chiefs’ form has been in 2024, with just two wins and 12 points collected from 13 league games.

Chiefs will end a ninth consecutive campaign without a single piece of Premier Soccer League silverware whatever happens on Saturday, and it is also almost certain that interim head coach Cavin Johnson will not be at the helm next season.

Spurs may be considered easy fodder given that Ernst Middendorp’s side are already relegated, but it is highly unlikely Middendorp will be allowing any holiday thoughts to cross his players’ minds, given his own history with Chiefs.

The German was fired by Chiefs at the end of the 2019/20 season despite only losing the league title to Mamelodi Sundowns on the final day of the campaign. Given how far Amakhosi has fallen since then, the decision does not look particularly wise.

Extra motivation

Middendorp may have failed in his rescue mission with Spurs, but he will surely be determined to show his former employers what they are missing. On top of that, sides always seem to gain extra motivation when they play Chiefs, whatever the circumstances.

Cape Town Spurs CEO Alexi Efstathiou told that there was no way the home side would be taking the game lightly.

“We have to be professional, we can’t just go there and kick the ball,” said Efstathiou.

“We have to go there for pride. It’s so important to perform at the highest level in our last game, and then after that, we decide our way forward.

“We respect Kaizer Chiefs and we love them as a team, but in that 90 minutes, we’re not going to love them that much,” he added.