More disappointment for fatigued Kaizer Chiefs

Johannesburg (AFP) –


Kaizer Chiefs' new Italian coach Giovanni Solinas blamed fatigue on Tuesday as a disappointing start to the 2018/2019 South African Premiership continued with a 1-1 draw at Baroka.

A Daniel Cardoso own goal gave the home team a 36th-minute lead in northern city Polokwane and South African international Siphiwe Tshabalala levelled direct from a free-kick on 43 minutes.

The matchday-three stalemate lifted traditional strugglers Baroka one place to sixth while four-time Premiership champions Chiefs remained 13th after two league draws and a loss.

"Baroka were much fresher because they did not play at the weekend while we had a cup tie," said Solinas, a close-season replacement for Steve Komphela after three trophy-less seasons.

"We play and we travel. There is no time for recovery or training," lamented the 50-year-old Italian, who has spent most of his coaching career in Algeria.

Chiefs, who started with two Zimbabweans, a Colombian and a Venezuelan, made three fatigue-related substitutions during the second half.

"I took off Leonardo Castro because he came to the touchline and admitted that he was exhausted," said Solinas.

While South African clubs regularly play two matches a week, all the footballers at the 16 top-flight clubs are full-time professionals.