Lessons from history in Bucs’ come-from-behind triumph
The last derby comeback was achieved in 1995 in what was the 100th meeting between the Soweto giants
Orlando Pirates’ 2-1 win over Kaizer Chiefs in front of almost 90,000 supporters at FNB Stadium on Saturday marked the first time in 64 derbies that one of the two Soweto giants had come from behind to win southern Africa’s biggest game.
Chiefs’ early lead, after the ball bounced in off Khama Billiat, was cancelled out by goals from Innocent Maela and Vincent Pule. Pirates could even afford to squander a penalty in winning the much-anticipated clash and extending to 10 games their unbeaten run against their traditional rivals.
It was last in June 1995 (when the league in SA started in February and ended in November) that a derby comeback was achieved in what was the 100th meeting between the two clubs, an occasion that passed by without any marketing or commemoration.
Chiefs had a furious start and took a third-minute lead through their Zairian striker Kanga Nzeza. But Pirates striker Bruce Ramokadi equalised after 28 minutes and then a mistake by Chiefs goalkeeper Brian Baloyi allowed a trademark long-rage thunderbolt from Marcus Mphafudi to give the Bucs a 2-1 lead in the 38th minute.
The second-half offering proved to be a damp squib for the 35,000 crowd, who only half-filled FNB Stadium. But Pirates coach Mike Makaab saw the bright side, saying afterwards: “I thought that the match was a great advert for SA soccer, and credit must go to the players on both sides.”
For Chiefs the result signalled the need for change, according to the media, but club boss Kaizer Motaung retorted: “People tend to be irrational after a defeat and start delivering blows. We need to build on what we have, not to dismantle it.”
But later in the season English coach Jeff Butler did take over from Peruvian Augusto Palacios as Chiefs’ coach.