Chiefs' coach Komphela bracing himself for more of the same against Ajax in Durban

13 October 2016 - 16:41 By Mninawa Ntloko


The relaxed and tranquil atmosphere is unmistakable as you walk through the gates at Kaizer Chiefs’ Naturena headquarters in the south of Johannesburg. Chiefs coach Steve Komphela also cuts a relaxed figure these days and is a long way from the days when he had the look of a man who appeared to have Public Protector Advocate Thuli Madonsela herself breathing down his neck.Three league wins in a row — a 2-0 victory against Free State Stars‚ a scrappy 1-0 triumph over Highlands Park in Tembisa and another 2-0 win against Maritzburg United at FNB Stadium — have all but silenced the angry chants of ’Steve must go’ that marked Chiefs matches early in the PSL season.The PSL log leaders face Ajax Cape Town at Moses Mabhida Stadium on Saturday evening (kick off at 6pm) in a league game that could either confirm that Chiefs have indeed turned the corner‚ or are they still a work in progress. While neutrals will be interested to see how Ajax coach Roger de Sa utilises the creative talents of new arrivals Mark Mayambela and Lebohang ‘‘Cheeseboy” Mokoena‚ Komphela says the duo are not likely to change much.‘‘A leopard will never change its spots‚ whatever happens. Ajax will always remain Ajax. (The arrival of the two players) could only be another dimension .‘‘Mayambela will give them an element of speed and excitement going forward‚ but there are also negatives in him.‘‘Cheeseboy as well‚ very exciting going forward. They also have the threat from Nathan Paulse‚ but basically I do not think much will change."Roger will always come up with his 4-3-3 formation in whatever form in the midfield. Whether the triangle has one man sitting in the middle or two‚ depending on the base‚ it will always be the same.” The 13th-placed Ajax have struggled since winning the MTN8 last year — they beat the selfsame Chiefs in the final — and the jury is out on which Ajax side will turn up at Moses Mabhida Stadium on Saturday.‘‘I do not read much because I know that when you read you get to be influenced‚” a cautious Komphela said.‘‘I fortunately came across a radio clip where Roger was talking about how they always have the upperhand against Kaizer Chiefs. To me that is motivating.‘‘And when you get into a match of this calibre‚ you say (to the players) ’listen let’s go and win this one’. But again look at how confident the opponent is when it comes to any team that plays against Chiefs‚ they literally bring their best game. Ajax will not be different‚ Roger as well.” De Sa told Times Media Digital this week that he would have preferred to play Chiefs while AmaKhosi were in the midst of the slump they had in the beginning of the season.A candid De Sa said this is the wrong time to be taking on Komphela's charges as he looked ahead to Saturday’s meeting between the two sides.“They have found form with those three wins on the trot‚” De Sa said.‘‘I always knew they would turn things around with the quality that they have.” - TMG Digital

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