Kaizer Chiefs have reached the finals of the CAF Champions League for the first time in their history … against all odds. This following a goalless draw against Wydad Casablanca in the second leg of the Champions League semifinal played at the FNB Stadium on Saturday evening.
Amakhosi progressed to the finals owing to the solitary goal they scored the Moroccans away last week.
Full time score: Kaizer Chiefs 0 (1) : 0 (0) Wydad Athletic Club
— Kaizer Chiefs (@KaizerChiefs) June 26, 2021
It has been a fairytale competition for the Naturena club which rose against the odds, breaking one record after the other in the continental tournament.
Making do with what they have following their two-window period transfer ban imposed on them by FIFA at the beginning of the season, very few gave Chiefs any chance in the tournament. Their domestic performance, which at some point saw them dicing with the relegation zone, leading to the firing of their head coach Gavin Hunt, was also far from inspiring.
They first broke their own record when they qualified for the knockout stages of the tournament earlier this year under Hunt.
The former SuperSport United mentor oversaw their advancement to the semifinals before he was shown the door and Arthur Zwane and Dillon Sheppard, without much coaching experience, were asked to step in.
But even that huge change on the bench was not enough to destabilise Amakhosi.
Zwane and Sheppard, with newly-appointed Stuart Baxter and Molefi Ntseki sitting in the stands, won their first-ever CAF Champions League match as co-coaches in Morocco.
The Moroccans, who looked threatening in much of the first leg encounter, were widely expected to reverse the scoreline when they travelled to South Africa, but it wasn’t to be.
Once again, Amakhosi were solid and organised at the back. But with Nkosingiphile Ngcobo back in the team, the team did better comparatively to keep the ball, which played a huge role in them preserving their 1-0 lead from last week.
Chiefs will now face either former Mamelodi Sundowns Coach Pitso Mosimane’s Al Ahly or Tunisia’s Esperance in the finals of the tournament on July 17.
The Egyptians go into their second leg semifinals against Esperance leading by 1-0 from last week and are favourites to meet Amakhosi in the final.