Home Sport Steve Komphela and his Moroka Swallows ‘bad boys’ have a point to...

Steve Komphela and his Moroka Swallows ‘bad boys’ have a point to prove against stuttering Kaizer Chiefs

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Coach Steve Komphela will meet his former club, Chiefs, for the first time since he broke loose of Mamelodi Sundowns’ co-coaching role, with the added aim of proving how much he’s grown since then.

Steve Komphela, coach of Moroka Swallows. Picture: Muzi Ntombela, BackpagePix

THE SOWETO derby between Moroka Swallows and Kaizer Chiefs could pre-determine where the two teams will finish on the standings at the end of the year.

Sure, a derby is all about dividing allegiances – be it in a community, family or relationship – as the bragging rights are up for grabs, but there’ll be more at stake in Dobsonville this Sunday.

Old friends will also become enemies and there’s still the matter of three points that could have a telling impact on where the two clubs could finish before the festive break.

Coach Steve Komphela will meet his former club, Chiefs, for the first time since he broke loose of Mamelodi Sundowns’ co-coaching role, with the added aim of proving how much he’s grown since then.

It’s well documented that Komphela had a bitter ending to his stint at Chiefs, having had to resign on the spot after being pelted with missiles by fans at Moses Mabhida Stadium in 2018. But a lot has happened since then, with Komphela landing jobs at Bloemfontein Celtic, Golden Arrows, Sundowns and most recently at Swallows this season.

It’s perhaps at the Birds where Komphela has found his mojo, having started the campaign well, thanks to the help of players that were ‘excommunicated’ due to their ‘bad boy’ tendencies.

Gabadinho Mhango, Lantshene Phalane, Andile Jali and Dumisani Zuma surfaced at Swallows this season with the hope of turning their careers around due to reported indiscretions. And boy have they dusted themselves off to breathe new life into the club, guiding the side to sixth place in the standings thus far.

With their clash against Orlando Pirates postponed, this will be their first derby of the season, while their biggest test to date was against Sundowns in the MTN8 quarter-final. That’s why they’ll want to win the derby, at home, and inflict more misery on Chiefs, who are struggling to put their poor run of form – despite the change of coaches – behind them.

Chiefs are already on their second coach of the season, having sacked Molefi Ntseki four months into the job and replaced him with Cavin Johnson on an interim basis. Johnson’s reign has been topsy-turvy as well, with Chiefs winning one game and losing two, including the Soweto derby against Pirates just before the Fifa break.

Sure, that loss stung, but there were positive signs from the Amakhosi faithful, who were clapping for the team instead of resorting to hooliganism like they did after a loss under Ntseki.

Chiefs, though, will have to win matches and show positive performances if they want to keep the harmony between the team and fans going – to avoid another sanction from the PSL DC.

So, there’d be no better time for the team to win the derby in Dobsonville. After all, not only are the bragging rights up for grabs but three points that could prove to be invaluable as well.

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