Under pressure Chippa seek to turn tables on Highlands Park

By ZINGISA MVUMVU and VUYOKAZI NKANJENI

Chippa United will be out for revenge this afternoon when they play host to Highlands Park at the Sisa Dukashe Stadium in Mdantsane.

HEAT IS ON: Chippa head coach Dan Malesela is looking for his team to win maximum points during their match against Highlands today at the Sisa Dukashe Stadium Picture: GALLO IMAGES
HEAT IS ON: Chippa head coach Dan Malesela is looking for his team to win maximum points during their match against Highlands today at the Sisa Dukashe Stadium Picture: GALLO IMAGES

This after Highlands Park knocked the Eastern Cape outfit out of the Telkom Knockout about two months ago.

And not only that – the Chilli Boys will also be looking to redeem themselves following their 1-0 defeat against Polokwane City midweek.

After an incredible win against Kaizer Chiefs, Chippa failed to keep the momentum going when they went down 1-0 to Polokwane City on Wednesday night.

Dan “Dance” Malesela’s charges, who started the season like a house-on-fire, seem to have lost steam and they now lie 10th on the logstandings.

The defeat against Polokwane was their fifth in the league so far this season.

The season has seen Chippa blowing both hot and cold.

Before falling to Polokwane they had emerged with a victory against struggling giants Kaizer Chiefs.

The win against Amakhosi was viewed as one to fire the Port Elizabeth side back to their winning ways, after going seven matches without a win.

However, it seems as if Malesela’s troops have not yet gotten the hang of things or their mojo back.

The Chilli Boys’ mentor, Malesela said failing to win against Polokwane put them under pressure to get maximum results from both games, starting with Highlands today before going away to Ajax Cape Town.

A win from both games could see the team close for the break inside the top- eight bracket in the log, depending on other results in the league.

“We have really now put ourselves under pressure to get maximum points from our last two fixtures of the league before we go to a break,” a concerned Malesela said.

“We need to win against Highlands Park in particular because we are playing at home so we really have to get maximum points and we expect a full house of spectators.”

And club boss Chippa Mpengesi agreed with his coach that a capacity crowd can help deliver them to victory.

“I think the boys, especially when playing in front of a fully packed stadium, tend to do well so I am confident they will emerge,” said Mpengesi. “It is always our wish to do well but with football, it has a funny way of springing surprises on one – but I believe in my boys.”

Malesela cautioned his charges to get over the Chiefs win hangover and put up an equally gutsy performance even against so- called minnows such as Highlands.

“We shouldn’t really take that [the win against Chiefs] to heart and we should move forward from that game and face other games that are coming,” said Malesela.

Chippa are 10th on the log, with 13 points from 12 matches.

And they have two more games left before the closure of the first leg of the PSL as the Christmas and Afcon break kicks in.

Meanwhile, the Tembisa side will be looking to get their third win against Chippa this season.

Highlands Park are 14th on the log, with 12 points from 13 matches.

They are just a point away from safety.

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