Kaizer Chiefs go three points clear at the top with win over Baroka
By beating Baroka FC 1-0 at the FNB Stadium, Kaizer Chiefs not only went three points clear at the top of the log, but recorded their first win at the iconic 2010 World Cup final host venue this season in three attempts.
Chiefs haven't dropped points on the road, but only garnered one point from a possible six at the FNB Stadium.
A draw against SuperSport United and a loss to Polokwane City contributed to that.
Their other home win was the 1-0 win against Black Leopards at the Moses Mabhida Stadium.
This victory, their fifth of the season, was a well deserved one but Baroka FC asked uncomfortable questions on a balmy but decent night for attacking football.
It was a hi-octane game from start to finish with both sides having plenty of chances.
The goalkeepers earned their keep with superb performances, with Daniel Akpeyi being a more than credible sub after replacing Itumeleng Khune in the 28th minute.
Elvis Chipezeze also put in a very good shift in goal but with Baroka having two late chances coming off the bar, Chiefs were lucky to get maximum points.
Chiefs though will be concerned with losing Khune and George Maluleka to injury ahead of Tuesday's home game against Lamontville Golden Arrows.
Baroka had opportunities in the 15th,18th and 19th minute through Matome Mabeba, Richard Mbulu and Gerald Phiri to open the scoring.
Mabeba's shot went narrowly wide of Khune's left-hand post while Mbulu and Phiri forced great saves from Khune from a shot on target and a wickedly in swinging corner.
Chiefs showed the better industry in the first 10 minutes but Lazarous Kambole was flagged for offside while Khama Billiat's first touch failed him.
Two minutes after coming on, Akpeyi was forced into an excellent save from a Collins Makgaga header that came from a Tshediso Padjie cross.
Baroka eventually paid for their goalmouth profligacy when Lebogang Manyama tapped in Kambole's rebound after Billiat's pace and pin-point pass shredded the Baroka defence.
The game's high tempo refused to recede in the second half as the teams traded chances thick and fast.
Kambole's pace was an issue for Baroka, but his inability to convert his chances wasn't as he fluffed 48th, 51st and 63rd minute opportunities.
Billiat was also guilty of the same with a 62nd minute screamer cannoning off the bar while missing a 77th minute chance.
Baroka also had their chances when Manuel Kambala's 65th minute long range was well saved by Akpeyi. Padjie and Phiri also forced saves from Akpeyi in the 59th minute.
Phiri though wasn't done with Chiefs and nearly shocked the reasonable crowd into silence in referee's optional time with a freekick that bounced off the bar.
Moments later, substitute Martin Nsimba had a shot that came off the bar with Akpeyi beaten, summing up the luck Chiefs had and Baroka's misfortune.
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