Kaizer Chiefs cruised to a 3-0 victory over Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila in their DStv Premiership encounter on Tuesday, extending their winning run to three games and looking to be hitting their stride under Gavin Hunt.
Amakhosi came into the game seeking a third successive league victory, after wins over AmaZulu and Cape Town City over the past week and a half helped lift them up the table. Gavin Hunt welcomed back striker Leonardo Castro for the clash.
TTM, on the other hand, have dropped down the table in recent weeks and found themselves in the bottom two heading into the clash. However, coach Joel Masutha was upbeat before the game, saying he was set to name his strongest-ever team at the club despite reports of a player revolt for salaries not paid.
Chiefs got off to a positive start despite having to make an early substitution with Ramahlwe Mphahlele forced off with injury, with Njabulo Blom replacing him.
Hunt’s men took advantage of their positive start when they opened the scoring with 19 minutes gone. Samir Nurkovic held the ball up beautifully before finding Nkosingiphile Ngcobo inside the box. The youngster’s first touch was immaculate as he flicked it over the defender’s head, his second touch even better as he smashed a volley past the TTM keeper to fire his side in the lead.
Chiefs had a chance to double their lead when Ngcobo played Darrel Matsheke in with a ball along the right flank following a free kick. The youngster couldn’t manage to keep his cross down, though, as it went flying over a frustrated Castro at the front post.
The Glamour Boys then looked to control the game through possession without creating too many chances and, while TTM had some possession of their own, they failed to test Daniel Akpeyi who had little to do in the first stanza.
The scoreline at the break was 1-0 for Chiefs.
The Soweto giants started the second stanza looking to continue to dominate the ball while being restricted to long-range efforts.
TTM eventually began to grow into the game and threatened Chiefs on a couple of occasions 10 minutes into the second half, but brilliant defending from, first, Anthony Akumu and then Daniel Cardoso snuffed out the danger.
Hunt then rang the changes and with Bernard Parker, Lebogang Manayama, Happy Mashiane and Lebohang Lesako all on the pitch, Amakhosi began to threaten again with Lesako almost rounding off a lovely flowing move which involved most of the subs with 60 minutes gone.
Six minutes later and Hunt’s substituting paid off as Mashiane was released by the down the left flank before whipping a ball across the six-yard box and finding Manyama at the back post, making no mistake with his finish.
Things got worse for TTM when, with seven minutes of normal time remaining, Alfred Ndengane received his marching orders for a second bookable offence.
Mashiane then rounded things off for the Glamour Boys as Manyama turned provider, slipping through the youngster before Mashiane coolly slotted his shot into the top corner.
Both teams finished with 10 men as Parker was sent off in stoppage time.
Three goals and three well-deserved points for Hunt’s men, who look to finally be finding their feet under the former Bidvest Wits coach.
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