Kaizer Chiefs line-up vs SuperSport United: (4-3-3) Khune; Mphahlele; Mathoho; Gordinho; Khumalo; Katsande; Maluleke; Tshabalala; Molangoane; Lebese; Parker.
Kaizer Chiefs 1-1 SuperSport United (United won 5-3 on penalties): This was a standard 4-2-3-1 against 4-3-3 battle, with Chiefs being possession-orientated and making Bidvest Wits shape more 4-4-1-1 for long periods.
Nevertheless SuperSport United coped well in a purely defensive sense, although they didn’t counter-attack much.
Chiefs superiority started in defence with Katsande dropping back to create a 3 v 1 around Jeremie Brockie, then shuttling forward into midfield to create an overload there too, and basically making sure Chiefs were playing triangles around SuperSport United.
George Maluleke and Simphiwe Tshabalala remained in midfield and Joseph Molangoane drifted inside to become an extra midfielder. Further. SuperSport defended deeper against a possession-based rather than a counter-attacking side.
SuperSport attacked sporadically. There were a couple of times when SuperSport caused problems in central positions. They struggled to produce many dangerous attacks, and a constant feeling throughout the game was that their four attacking players all seemed to be playing as individuals- there were very few combinations between them in the final third.
The most impressive thing about Chiefs was their organization without the ball. Although they pressed high up in the opening stages, their regular approach was to use an extremely compact ‘medium block’ without the ball- which is to say they kept a high line but invited the opposition defence to play the ball into midfield, where they then pounced and broke quickly.
Much of Supersport’s possession was in deep positions, and their only real chance of getting the ball forward was down the flanks.
Chiefs’ game plan was working, and as the game drew on they became better at attacking quickly having had possession in defence. Molangoane’s movement was excellent as usual, particularly when it was Omnisor Bhasera he was dragging around
There were two real features of Chiefs play. First: good organization without the ball, by staying compact and winning the ball in midfield. Second: quick attacks.
By Boikhutso Mogale