Chippa United coach Clinton Larsen fires warning to Kaizer Chiefs
Chippa United coach Clinton Larsen has warned Kaizer Chiefs to expect a proper scrap when the two teams meet in their final Absa Premiership clash of the season at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Port Elizabeth on Saturday.
The Chilli Boys have a skip in their step after beating Polokwane City 3-1 on Saturday to breath new life into their dream of staying in top-flight football.
There is still a lot to play for and and while the Port Elizabeth-based side will be fighting to stave off the possibility of relegation this coming weekend‚ Chiefs will have their eye on hanging onto their top eight berth with victory over Chippa.
But the AmaKhosi will also have one eye on the Nedbank Cup final against TS Galaxy next weekend and will want to come out of the Chippa game relatively unscathed.
Larsen knows this and plans to target what he perhaps considers to be Chiefs’ soft spot.
“Chiefs have got to be very cautious in terms of players getting injured for the final a week later. So it will be interesting to see what type of team they put out‚” said the steely Larsen.
“It's going to be a very physical encounter. My players will definitely roll their sleeves up like they did on Saturday.
"So‚ it's going to be interesting to see if the Chiefs players are prepared to put their feet where it hurts because my players are definitely going to go all out for a win.”
Chippa United‚ placed 13th on the log‚ are involved in a five-way tussle for the relegation spots of 15th and 16th.
They now control their own fate and a win would see them survive to fight another season in the Premiership.
“We are not looking at what other teams are doing.
"We came into this game knowing that we need to win our last two games. We going to go to Chiefs with the same mindset on Saturday and will make sure that we play with our hearts on our sleeves‚” added Larsen.
The former Golden Arrows coach may have some selection dilemmas to ponder this week.
He may not want to fiddle with a winning combination but he has some proper talent coming back from injury that may sway him.
“We've been hard-hit by injuries and suspensions‚" he said.
"Xolani’s [Maholo] been out suspended‚ Freddie Nsabiyumva is out injured‚ [Thabo] Rakhale is one of our star players and he's out injured. Andile Mbenyane has been banging in the goals and he's injured.
“There is a good chance all three of them (injured players) will be available for Kaizer Chiefs and it will give me a nice headache for that last game.”
Tuesday May 7 2019:
Mamelodi Sundowns v Golden Arrows
Saturday’s final day programme is (all matches kick off at 3pm):
SuperSport United v Highlands Park
Orlando Pirates v Polokwane City
Black Leopards v Cape Town City
Bloemfontein Celtic v AmaZulu
Golden Arrows v Bidvest Wits
Chippa United v Kaizer Chiefs
Baroka v Maritzburg United
Free State Stars v Mamelodi Sundowns