Happy – but Dan warns of pressure

WAY AHEAD: Chippa United coach Dan Malesela has big ambitions for the future of the club Picture: GALLO IMAGES
WAY AHEAD: Chippa United coach Dan Malesela has big ambitions for the future of the club

Chippa United coach Dan Malesela says the pressure will become even more intense for his team after their superb 2-0 win over Platinum Stars in their MTN8 debut at Royal Bafokeng Stadium on Saturday.

The Chilli Boys cracked their cup hoodoo in impressive style as goals from Rhulani Manzini and Menzi Masuku ensured the team booked their spot in the competition’s semifinals at the first attempt.

Since their involvement in knockout matches in the 2013-14 season, Chippa have never progressed past the first round.

But this time, coach and mastermind Malesela delivered on his promise, meaning Chippa are now two wins away from a massive payday.

But he warned: “Now that we are here, there will also be some more pressure. But you understand that players will be tense and all of that.

Referring to Saturday’s match, Malesela said: “The first half was not so good. The plus for us was that we scored a goal . . . we were gifted a goal anyway. But we got a little bit better in the second half. Also, with the changes that we made we became a little bit patient and a little more offensive minded. So, it’s good for us.

“The pressure was on us because it’s a cup game and we needed to get to the second stage which we haven’t done before.”

Asked if his team could go all the way in the competition, the former Mamelodi Sundowns’ defender said: “I don’t want to be a prophet but we will give it our best shot.

“Everything that comes we will give it our best shot.” The Chilli Boys’ remarkable sixth place last season booked the team a place in the lucrative competition, where they stand a chance of walking away R8-million richer.

Chippa dominated throughout the game and gave the hosts little space to play.

The first goal came after nine minutes through Manzini.

He also scored both goals in the opening league game against Free State Stars last week.

The Chilli Boys controlled the pace and flow of the game, while Dikwena struggled to open the visitors’ defence. Chippa wrapped up the victory with a Masuku tap-in after 79 minutes.

The Chilli Boys will face Mamelodi Sundowns in the semifinals, while Bidvest Wits will be up against Cape Town City.

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