Willard Katsande has fully recovered and is back in the starting XI. The Zimbabwean international will captain Amakhosi in the absence of Itumeleng Khune, who underwent earlier this week a shoulder operation.
Absent, however, is George Maluleka, who is suffering from a slight Achilles problem and has stayed behind in Johannesburg to recover.
Kgotso Moleko wasn’t registered for the CAF Confederation Cup competition and he will be replaced in the defensive line by Teenage Hadebe.
Kaizer Chiefs will face Zambia’s champions Zesco United this afternoon at Levy Mwanawasa Stadium in Ndola. This modern and beautiful stadium has a capacity of 41 000. It’s expected that about 20 000 people will attend this first leg of the CAF Confederation Cup play-off round.
Zesco hasn’t lost yet at home against a South African opponent, beating Mamelodi Sundowns in 2016 and drawing to SuperSport United in 2017.
A place in the group stage of the CAF Confederation Cup will be the award for the winner on aggregate after the two legs have been played.
It means a lot is at stake, which was confirmed by Zesco coach George Lwandamina in an interview with Zambia’s Sunday Mail. “Chiefs would want to go into the group stage and equally ourselves would want to go. It will be a grudge game.”
The second leg will be hosted at FNB Stadium on Saturday, 19 January (kick-off at 20:00). Tickets for the second leg are already available at Computicket and Shoprite/Checkers at R40.
Kick-off for this afternoon’s match between Chiefs and Zesco is scheduled for 15:00.
The game won’t be broadcasted on TV in South Africa.
The referee is the Zimbabwean, Norman Matemera.
Chiefs’ line-up: Vries (16); Hadebe (20), Booysen (5), Cardoso (4), Walusimbi (29); Manyama (21), Katsande, captain (14), Ekstein (27), Ntiya-Ntiya (24); Billiat (11), Castro (8)
Subs: Bvuma (26), Ngezana (30), Zulu (22), Andrianarimanana (6), Ntshangase (10), Zuma (28), Moon (7), Parker (25)
Head coach: Ernst Middendorp