Kaizer Chiefs got back to winning after a hard-fought victory against Maritzburg United in the Nedbank Cup over the weekend. Arthur Zwane’s side had a much happier outing than their game against TS Galaxy last week, where they were left frustrated with only a point from the match. One of the glaring weaknesses in Chiefs’ performance was the lack of great wide play, both from their wingers and fullbacks.
Happy Mashiane may be the answer to Arthur Zwane’s creative dilemma, as he brilliantly swung in a Beckham-esque cross to the back post which ultimately resulted in a goal by Christian Saile. Mashiane changed the game after being substituted for Sifiso Hlanti, as he was bursting forward at every opportunity, whipping in dangerous crosses, and causing the low-block defensive structure of Maritzburg United to drop even deeper, inviting more pressure.
In recent times, Chiefs fullbacks have rarely overlapped and gone ahead of their respective wingers, which may be one of the reasons Keegan Dolly has struggled to create more chances. Reeve Frosler has not been supporting Dolly or getting close enough in attacking sequences. Happy Mashiane was the opposite of what we have seen of Chiefs fullbacks and completely changed the game. The 25-year-old has struggled with injuries recently and has only appeared in four games this season, but he must surely be in Arthur Zwane’s thoughts to start more PSL matches for the rest of the season, especially with the Soweto Derby coming up on the 25th of February.
Happy Mashiane offers an attacking dimension to Kaizer Chiefs, with the quality and accuracy of his crossing. He will make Bimenyima look much better by playing to his strengths, but he also has an excellent quality of selecting the right pass at the right moment, which is a skill that is very difficult to teach. Therefore, Happy Mashiane needs to be playing regularly for Arthur Zwane’s side, and the AmaKhosi faithful would want the same.
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