HIGH-FLYING Kaizer Chiefs are smelling blood heading into their second meeting with bitter rivals Orlando Pirates.
Barely a week after their last encounter in the Telkom Knockout in Durban last weekend, the two Soweto giants are set to renew their rivalry.
This time, though, in the PSL at the iconic FNB Stadium on Saturday (3.30pm). They head into what will be derby number 168, with contrasting fortunes.
Chiefs have been a team on a mission so far this season, swatting aside just about every team that has been put in front of them.
On the other hand, their opponents Pirates have huffed and puffed for most part of the season.
Amakhosi, who haven’t beaten their rivals in the league since 2014, are eager to change that statistic and pile more misery on Bucs.
Chiefs star Khama Billiat believes they are a much better team this season and are in a good position to end Bucs’ dominance over them.
“I think the coach has instilled some things this season like work rate and energy,” said Billiat.
“It is amazing how much we want to win when we play. You see your team mate fighting so hard and it just rubs off on you.
“We are all moving in the right direction and that’s a big part of our success so far. But we are not getting carried away, we know we need to fix a few things here and there. Hopefully by the end of the season, we will be where we want to be.”
Billiat believes they have finally grasped what coach Ernst Middendorp wants from them, hence the results have been coming.
“It took some time to get used to the way he wanted us to play, but through hard work we are beginning to get it,” added Billiat.
“He is the type of coach who is intense, he wants the best and he wants to get things done. He does it everywhere, even in training.
“I think that works for this team, everyone has adopted that mentality and we are fighting for every 50/50 just to contribute positively in every aspect.”
His teammate Lebogang Manyama has attributed their fine form to a good team spirit and togetherness.
“It’ just been team effort over individual effort,” said Manyama.
“We love one another. We fight for each other. The love and harmony and the unity has grown and will only get better.”