Kaizer Chiefs’ Africa hopes dashed after Durban draw

Kaizer Chiefs’ slim hopes of playing in African continental competition next season were dashed on Sunday when they drew 1-1 at lowly AmaZulu in the South African Premiership.The Johannesburg club had to win in Durban, and also collect maximum points from their last two league matches against Polokwane City and Cape Town Spurs to have a chance of finishing fourth.

Champions Mamelodi Sundowns and the runners-up — either Stellenbosch or Orlando Pirates — will enter the next CAF Champions League.

The clubs finishing third and fourth — currently Pirates and Sekhukhune United — qualify for the second-tier CAF Confederation Cup.

Stellenbosch and Pirates are assured of places in one of the African competitions, leaving Sekhukhune, TS Galaxy, SuperSport United and Cape Town City in contention for last spot.

Sekhukhune are two points ahead of Galaxy and SuperSport and three above Cape Town as they seek a second successive Confederation Cup appearance.

Eighth-placed Chiefs made a perfect start against AmaZulu with Ashley du Preez scoring 86 seconds into the first half after intercepting a square pass.

AmaZulu levelled on 39 minutes through a Sepana Letsoalo header, but the goal should have been disallowed as big-screen replays showed the scorer was offside.

Du Preez had a chance to win the match in added time, but his close-range shot was brilliantly saved by AmaZulu goalkeeper Veli Mothwa.

Runaway leaders Sundowns were the only top-half club to win at the weekend with five drawing and two losing.

A 1-0 home loss by Pirates to second-last Richards Bay was a shock as the Buccaneers entered the match in Soweto having won seven consecutive games in all competitions.

Sanele Barns scored on 36 minutes for Bay and the result condemned bottom club Cape Town Spurs to relegation after just one season in the top flight.


© Agence France-Presse

Photo: Twitter @iDiskiTimes

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Dylan Johnson