EDITORIAL | Chippa out to pull off giant-killing win
Fortune favours the brave, as Chippa United proved by securing a berth in the Nedbank Cup semifinals after a nerve-wracking penalty shoot-out win over fancied Wits.
Few had given the Chilli Boys much hope of pulling this one off against a much-fancied Wits team in Johannesburg.
Chippa’s reward for earning a spot in the last four is a moneyspinning home clash against Kaizer Chiefs in Port Elizabeth on May 11.
The Chippa-Wits match ended deadlocked at 4-4 after 120 thrilling minutes, before the Chilli Boys edged Wits 5-3 on penalties.
The clash was likened to two boxers slugging it out toe to toe and refusing to go down to the canvas as eight goals were scored in both normal and extra time.
It is to their credit that Chippa threw everything into a successful cup run, considering they are fighting a battle to preserve their Premier League status.
Adventurous Chippa coach Clinton Larsen fielded a full-strength lineup against Wits and his positive attitude paid handsome dividends.
He could easily have decided to rotate his players to keep them fresh for the tough battle they are fighting for Premier League survival.
Chippa fought like warriors against Wits and this augurs well for the remainder of their league campaign.
Chiefs’ attempt to halt a four-year trophy-less run will be put to the test when Amakhosi travel to the Eastern Cape to face Chippa.
Chiefs reached the semifinals after beating Cape Town City 2-0 at the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit.
Chiefs last won a trophy in 2015 when they were crowned premiership champions under Stuart Baxter, and their trophy-less run is starting to make management and fans nervous.
Amakhosi coach Ernst Middendorp‚ who replaced hapless Italian Giovanni Solinas in December 2018‚ is now two games away from halting the slide.
Everything is now set up for a dramatic showdown in Port Elizabeth as Chippa seek to pull off another giantkilling act.