Chiefs off to a good start with victory over Highlands Park

Kaizer Chiefs players
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Kaizer Chiefs edged Highlands Park in an entertaining affair at the Makhulong Stadium. Amakhosi, who were 2-1 down early in the second half, scored two unanswered goals for a 3-2 victory.

In the KwaZulu-Natal derby, Golden Arrows managed to hold on to a 0-0 draw against Maritzburg United at the Sugar Ray Xulu Stadium.

Sibusiso Mbonani’s goal in the 44th minute was enough to see Polokwane City secure victory over Black Leopards at the Thohoyandou Stadium.

Chiefs, who had a rather disappointing campaign last season, were eager to get off to a good start.

Ernst Middendorp responded by including three of his new signings in Lazarous Kambole, Samir Nurkovic and Kearyn Baccus in the starting line-up.

Baccus was influential in Amakhosi’s first goal, providing an early assist for Lebogang Manyama to head home in the sixth minute.

The Lions of the North equalised in the 23rd minute through new signing Rodney Ramagalela who reacted with a quick tap in from a Peter Shalulile cross. With few minutes remaining to halftime, it became a stop start affair as both sides applied pressure in a bid to take the lead into the break.

It was a quick start from both sides in the opening five minutes of the second half. Shalulile registered his name on the scoresheet as he punished a disorganised Chiefs defence in the 47th minute.

However, the celebrations were cut short as Manyama netted his brace three minutes later when he connected with Nurkovic header.

Chiefs defence will count itself lucky on a few occasions after committing errors that could have been costly. It’s an area that Middendorp will focus on in the upcoming games.

Eric Matoho netted the decisive goal in the 83rd minute with a strike that took a deflection to beat Marlon Heugh.

In the KZN derby, Golden Arrows claimed the bragging rights in a tricky encounter. The match went into the break deadlocked, but it was the home team, Arrows, that secured all three points with an early goal in the second half.

Michael Gumede scored seconds from kickoff to ensure that Abafana Besthende get off to winning ways in the new season.