Kaizer Chiefs so low? Royal AM ‘happy’ to get Amakhosi instead of Dondol Stars in Nedbank Cup

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Mxolisi Macuphu, Royal AM & Ashley du Preez, Kaizer Chiefs, January 2023
Royal AM coach Khabo Zondo is celebrating avoiding giant-killers Dondol Stars and being drawn against Kaizer Chiefs in the Nedbank quarter-finals.
  • The Nedbank Cup draw was conducted on Monday
  • Chiefs were paired with bogey side Royal AM
  • Now Royal AM are fancying their chances

WHAT HAPPENED? The Nedbank Cup last-eight draw was conducted on Monday with the three traditional giants Chiefs, Orlando Pirates and Mamelodi Sundowns avoiding each other.

Pirates who got third-tier side Dondol Stars,who have eliminated SuperSport United and AmaZulu from the competition in its earlier rounds.

The semi-professional side have Premier Soccer League sides shivering at hearing their name, and Zondo admits to breathing a sigh of relief after not being paired with Dondol.

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The Royal AM coach says they would have preferred high-flying Mamelodi Sundowns but is still happy they were drawn against Chiefs, who they “still have a score to settle with.”

WHAT WAS SAID: “Firstly, I’m happy that we avoided Dondol Stars and we were hoping to get Sundowns,” said Zondo as per Sowetan Live.

“MaMkhize [chairperson Shauwn Mkhize] was saying ‘please get Sundowns for me', but nevertheless, we still have a score to settle with Chiefs because last time they beat us. Now they are coming for a tough game and it can go either way.

“We respect them for what they are, but you could see our boys are beginning to score now, which was lacking before and John Maduka is doing a good job with the players.”

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Chiefs used to be one of the most feared sides in the PSL but it seems that has changed. Zondo celebrating meeting Amakhosi in the Nedbank Cup might be a rough indication of how standards have dropped at Naturena.

The Royal AM coach's remarks could be justified by the fact that Amakhosi have been struggling for silverware since 2015 and are now battling to provide players to the Bafana Bafana squad. Anyone can now fancy three points against the Soweto giants, something that used to be unimaginable in the past.

WHAT NEXT FOR CHIEFS & ROYAL AM? The two sides get back to their respective league matches with Chiefs visiting Maritzburg United at the weekend while Royal AM clash with Mamelodi Sundowns on Tuesday.