After watching Orlando Pirates relentlessly press Moroka Swallows and striking the posts several times and missing clear cut scoring chances, the sudden realisation that the match was in Soweto’s Dobsonville Stadium, comes with the understanding that it was African football after all.
With Barcelona huffing and puffing against Chelsea in the UEFA Champions League semi-final, succumbing to a Didier Drogba solitary sucker punch, the question of juju working on white people should be revisited. In any case, that match was at Stanford Bridge, which like Dobsonville Stadium, might have been well doctored to respect the home advantage.
Real Madrid visited Bayern Munich and looked set to scrap a point until the fat lady sang. On the balance of scales, they got what they deserved despite their bargaining skills. In that encounter, any mention of wizardry should receive a death penalty. The final 2-1 result depended on the home side, who were lucky to be awarded the first goal that was offside, and scored a classy second.
Real Madrid played very poor football based a very strict and rigid structure and instruction to mark the opposition only from the centre line and launch an immediate attack by sending a ridiculously long ball to the most advanced players every time.
The aggression borne out of arrogance and the coach’s psychological grilling were typical of the failed tactics they had always used in the El Classico shows. Real should have played to their strengths, one thing they will do at the Santiago Bernebeu on the return leg. Whether they will take much gamble in the match against Barca, it remains to be seen.
From experience, they do not have a solution to Barcelona, who proved to be very much beatable with their outing to Chelsea. They may claim to have seen a lion or that the goals shifted with every attack, Ike Cassillas may have been seeing double himself.
The thin advantages carried by home teams will not count for much during the return legs, only the tactics involved will be very interesting and conducive to better football than we have seen so far.
As for the ABSA Premiership, Mamelodi Sundowns’ sun went down on them at home against Platinum Stars 2-1 concding the top spot to the Buccanneers. Kaizer Chiefs lost grip of the chasing pack with the sad loss to Maritzburg United at Polokwane.
As the original Soweto derby failed to separate boys from men, it means the Gauteng teams will have to depend much on what happens elsewhere in the next 5 or 6 games. Pirates can dwell on the fact that should the season end right now, or all the teams top 8 teams lose their remaining matches, they will be champions again but some of these teams still have to play each other.
As a fortune teller and witchdoctor of your team, who is the fairest of them all?