Kaizer Chiefs forward Khama Billiat has revealed the conversation he had with Yusuf Maart before he scored a spectacular long strike against Orlando Pirates in the Soweto Derby.
Maart scored a memorable goal in a league derby win against Pirates, where he scooped a long range effort from his own half that caught the Buccaneers goalkeeper Siyabonga Mpontshane out of his area and dipped underneath the crossbar. The goal also received global recognition after FIFA shared the clip on the social media platforms of the football world governing body, asking followers if it should be considered for the Puskas award.
Billiat, who intercepted the ball and allowed Maart to have a stupendous long range strike says he saw that Mpontshane was "way off" his line in the first stanza and relayed the message to Maart at half-time.
"So this is what happened, when we were playing first-half, Maart always tried to pass me and as a striker of course, I'm always checking the goalkeeper, I'm always checking where I am, where the opponents are," Billiat said in the Vodacom Ringa Nathi interview on the club's official YouTube Channel.
"So first half he passed me but when I look back, I saw the goalkeeper (Mpontshane) off his line, like way (off his line), so I went to him (Maart), I was like, 'Hey, before you pass or (any other teammate), just check the goalkeeper. You might have to hit him'.
"So it's just the heat of the moment, I'm just telling him, I never thought he'll take it, I was like 'Ah... I'm just telling him, it's just another option for him and all that' you know," he said.
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"So I went again at half time, I told him, 'Did you see how far this goalkeeper is coming?' Then he said, 'Ja, I saw it. (I said) let's try it, whoever gets a chance you need to make him (Mpontshane) work.
"And then when I saw an opponent getting the ball, I was like, 'We have to press here' because the goalkeeper is out already, if we press it here he won't get back," he explained with a smile.
"So when we went to press and they were caught loose, because he's intelligent, very great technique that he has, he hit him. I didn't think he'll take it that one. I just thought it's just a football conversation.
"You might not see it, sometimes you see a lot of things and then boom, 90 minutes is gone, and you're like 'Ah, should have, could have..."
Billiat did not want to take credit for his awareness in that moment but praised Maart for having the presence of mind to remember the conversation in the heat of the moment and using the right technique.
"It's for him, he's a good player, it's your decision. It's just like we get to be taught a lot of things by coaches, we get to prepare you know," he said.
"But it's not easy to do, it's not easy (to do) in the game, it's too fast, emotions are high, so to make a right decision is difficult but for him to actually remember in that heat of the moment, to check, use the right technique, that was great, you don't see that a lot," he added.
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