Chiefs can dash Santos' hopes

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David Bright’s team missed out on a place in the semi-finals of the cup last weekend with a surprise loss to Free State Stars, but they must now set their sights on overhauling leaders Supersport United and Ajax Cape Town.

Santos have won seven of their last nine league games under Bright, a run of form that has transformed them from possible relegation candidates to genuine title contenders.

And Supersport United’s defeat to Mamelodi Sundowns on Tuesday has renewed hope that Santos could yet sneak in the back door and steal the title from under the noses of Matsatsantsa and cross town rivals Ajax Cape Town, who lead on goal difference after a 2-0 win over Orlando Pirates on Wednesday evening.

Chiefs, meanwhile, saw their three-match winning streak in the league broken by Sundowns at the Loftus Stadium, with the Pretoria team winning 1-0.

It was a bitter disappointment for Amakhosi, not as much for the result at the performance: Chiefs were simply always a step behind the Brazilians, and the Soweto club have a long road to travel if they are to challenge for league honours next season, a sobering thought for even their most ardent supporters.

However, Amakhosi have a vastly superior head-to-head record against Santos, winning 13 games to the Cape side’s three in their 26 league games since 1991. The last meeting of the teams, on December 9 last year, ended goalless.

Chiefs:Date H/A Opponent Result13/04/08 A Mamelodi Sundowns L 0-106/04/08 A Moroka Swallows W 3-121/03/08 H AmaZulu W 1-009/03/08 A Free State Stars W 4-105/03/08 H Platinum Stars D 0-0

Santos:11/04/08 H Jomo Cosmos D 1-104/04/08 H Black Leopards W 4-023/03/08 A Bloemfontein Celtic W 1-012/03/08 A Mamelodi Sundowns D 0-008/03/08 H Golden Arrows W 3-1

HEAD TO HEAD STATS:League meetings since 1997/98:

1997/98Santos 0 Chiefs 1 (Biyela)Chiefs 2 (Lebese, Masunda) Santos 0

1998/98Santos 4 (Notoane 2, Mentoor, Otieno (pen)) Chiefs 2 (Ndlanya (pen), Lebese)Chiefs 2 (Tovey, Zwane) Santos 1 (McCarthy)

1999/2000Chiefs 3 (Lebese, Nomvete, Nauseb) Santos 1 (Raselemane)Santos 1 (Sekhoto) Chiefs 1 (Pule)

2000/01Santos 1 (Booysen) Chiefs 1 (Nomvete)Chiefs 1 (Nomvete (pen)) Santos 1 (Mahlangu)

2001/02Chiefs 1 (Fredericks) Santos 0Santos 0 Chiefs 0

2002/03Santos 0 Chiefs 0Chiefs 1 (Moshoeu) Santos 0

2003/04Chiefs 0 Santos 0Santos 0 Chiefs 0

2004/05Chiefs 1 (Ngobese) Santos 0Santos 0 Chiefs1 (Mbesuma)

2005/06Chiefs 0 Santos 0Santos 1 (C.Scott) Chiefs 3 (Schalkwyk 2, Mayo)

2006/07 Chiefs 3 (Bartlett 2, Nkosi) Santos 2 (R. Scott, Gabonamong)Santos 3 (Chapman, Rodgers, R. Scott) Chiefs 1 (Mototo)

2007/08Santos 0 Chiefs 0