A disappointing weekend for the Buccaneers, as they suffered a defeat to their rivals Kaizer Chiefs in a Soweto derby. Second-place Supersport United got their groove back after defeating Maritzburg United on Friday night in the Dstv Premiership. Once again, we dive into the weekend’s winners and losers.
Bradley Grobler – Winners
It was a case of ‘job done’ for SuperSport United with their Friday night win over Matritzburg. Two second-half goals were enough to seal the points and most pleasingly for Gavin Hunt, a few more checkboxes were ticked. Another home win. A clean sheet. Opening up the gap to your nearest challengers. But the most satisfying aspect of the performance would have been his main striker reaching a unique landmark.
Bradley Grobler became the latest man to reach 100 goals for a PSL club in all competitions, becoming the sixth overall ever to do so. One needs to just look at the illustrious company he joins to better grasp the enormity of this milestone – Siyabonga Nomvete, Daniel Mudau, Mabhuti Khanyeza, Tico-Tico Bucuane, and Collins Mbesuma.
It should not be forgotten that half of those goals came after Grobler turned 30, and after a period of time where he suffered a few career-threatening injuries and recurrences. Two years ago, his father predicted that his son had the ability to reach Siya Nomvete’s 123-goal record.
“He could be closer to the record but not being 100 percent fit affected his game in the past. For the last two years, he has been injury-free. But if he stays injury-free he can get there ” – Les Grobler (Goal)
When Grobler spent half of last season out due to injury, this prediction seemed very far-fetched. Many speculated that age and injuries had finally caught up to him. But here we are. Gavin Hunt needs no statistics to recognise Grobler’s contribution, praising him endlessly at full time and even hinting there could be more goals (trust us, Coach, we have quadruple-checked). For now, Grobler can only focus on getting to the next milestone. He needs five goals to surpass both Collins Mbesuma and Tico-Tico Bucuane, and at the current rate, that is a possibility this season.
Mabhuti Khenyeza & Daniel Mudau totals (both 110) may need another campaign, and then all eyes can be set on Siyabonga Nomvete.
SuperSport Fortress – Winner
SuperSport remain the only team to lose a home league game this season with six wins and four draws in the 10 home matches played. In fact, today marks exactly one year since they were last beaten in a league game at home (27 February 2022 v Royal AM).
Kaizer Chiefs – Winner
Five straight derby wins for Chiefs and this is a fixture that is becoming easy to predict. In fact, it turns out Chiefs don’t even need to score anymore to get all three points.
1 – Kaizer Chiefs have lost one of the last ten Soweto derbies that they came into on the back of a defeat.
Cape Sides Away – Winner
2 – This was only the second time that Stellies and Cape Town City both won an away league on the same day since Stellies were promoted in 2019 (also 6 April 2022).
Stellenbosch’s Revival – Winner
With every subsequent game, the come-from-two-nil-behind win over Cape Town City looks like the season turning point for Steve Barker’s side. It’s three wins in a row in the league (they’ve never done better in the top flight), and four in a row in all competitions (you have to go back to their NFD days for such a streak). The home clash versus Sundowns next week is shaping up to be a very interesting tie.
2 – Stellies have won back-to-back away games for only the third time in their top-flight history.
Junior Mendieta – Winner
Six league assists for the Argentinian places him level at the top of the assist charts this season. With five goals too, his 11-goal involvements in the league is also the joint-most (level with Peter Shalulile).
Eric Tinkler – Winner
Just the second away win of the season, and what a way to get it – with another worldie of a goal. Each of Cape Town City’s last three goals have come from outside the box, while all of their previous 19 this season had been scored from inside the box. The revival is looking better for Tinkler.
16 – Only Sundowns (27) have won more points since the World Cup than Cape Town City (16).
Richards Bay – Loser
It is instructive that Richards Bay have faced similar situations in each of their last four games, falling behind against teams you’d normally expect to keep out (AmaZulu, Swallows FC, Sekhukhune & Stellenbosch) and then struggling to come back. Before this run of five winless games, Richards Bay fell behind just three times in 17 matches. In the first half of the season when the Rich Boyz were still an unknown entity, things were easier as they’d often take the lead and put the onus on opponents to find a way to crack them. Very few succeeded. Now, the onus is on them to find goals after falling behind, and this is proving to be a test too far for the newly promoted side. They are probably safe from relegation, but their form is starting to get a bit worrying.
5 – Richards Bay have conceded at least once in each of their last five league games, as many times as they had conceded in 16 games before then.
Orlando Pirates Misfortune – Loser
Five straight losses to Chiefs is unprecedented, but this particular loss can be filed under Misfortune.ctly one year since they won an away game.
1 – This was the first time Pirates received a red card & scored an own goal in a Soweto derby game.
Royal AM & Conceding Late Goals – Loser
They have conceded 10 goals in the final 10 minutes of matches this season, the most of all teams.
PSL Officiating – Loser
AmaZulu will consider themselves ro have been hard done by the decision to disallow Hendrick Ekstein’s goal. Some of the officiating this past weekend was just bizarre.