As Kaizer Chiefs supremo Kaizer Motaung celebrates his 75th birthday on Wednesday, the club’s head coach Ernst Middendorp says not even winning their Telkom Knockout last 16 match against Cape Town City on Saturday will be special enough to honour this giant of South African football.

Chiefs staff gathered at the club’s village in Naturena on Wednesday morning to sing happy birthday for Motaung, which was recorded on the phone and sent to him as he is outside the country.

Middendorp, who is on his second stint at the club, has worked with the PSL executive committee member and SAFA council member for years and has got a lot of respect for what he’s achieved.

Chiefs had some internationals who went to represent their countries during this international break specifically Bafana Bafana, SA U23’s and Zambia.

Middendorp was concerned about the injury that Eric Mathoho was carrying going to the Bafana camp, but he’s happy to see him return in good shape.

Before the break, Chiefs had players like Samir Nurkovic, George Maluleka, Reeve Frosler and Siphosakhe Ntiya-Nitya on the injury list, but good news for the Amakhosi faithful from Middendorp is that they are all available for selection.

Whilst a lot has been said about Chiefs’ 4-2 win over Mamelodi Sundowns in the Shell Helix Cup exhibition game this past weekend, Middendorp is not reading much into that. He’s also not overly concerned about prioritising matches that have to follow but wants his team to excel.

Meanwhile, with Chiefs going into another cup competition, Zimbabwean international Khama Billiat has reiterated his desire to lift some official silverware with Amakhosi as he hopes to build on from the momentum of the league this season.

Chiefs are currently four points clear at the top of the Absa Premiership log after eight matches played but have played two games more than the second-placed Bidvest Wits. – Report by Velile Mnyandu