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Key Kaizer Chiefs Players Pivotal To Deliver CAF Title

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Kaizer Chiefs are a match away from reaching their first-ever CAF Champions League final. But despite their narrow 1-0 advantage from the first leg, they will need players to step up to the occasion when they host Wydad AC in the return leg of the semi-finals.

We at Sports Leo having looked in their squad have decided to pick the following five players pivotal to their Title lifting at the final for the first time at Naturena.

BRUCE BVUMA – GOALKEEPER

Bvuma was the hero when Chiefs achieved the improbable by defeating Wydad in the first leg away from home. The 26-year-old goalkeeper didn’t keep a clean sheet because Wydad were lackluster upfront on the day.

A series of superb saves from the 26-year-old enabled the Johannesburg club to stun hosts Wydad Casablanca of Morocco 1-0 last weekend in the first leg of their semi-final.

Instead, it was due to his exceptional goalkeeping and coordinated defensive organization that ensured that Chiefs earned a vital clean sheet away from home.

However, it is in tomorrow’s game where another Bvuma clean sheet will be key.

Bvuma began the season last October as the third choice behind Itumeleng Khune and Nigerian Daniel Akpeyi, but injuries offered him chances to shine.

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PHOTO/COURTESY

BERNARD PARKER – CAPTAIN

That’s why Parker will have to ensure that he leads with aplomb on and off the pitch.

Parker, who is one of the integral figures at Amakhosi due to his versatility and being the coaches’ mouthpiece, knows that his future at the club could depend on their success in Africa.

WILLARD KATSANDE – MIDFIELDER

Just like his captain, Katsande’s contract is set to expire at the end of the month.

But the bulky Zimbabwean remains adamant that Chiefs’ success on the continent is more important than his future, especially after their shortcomings in the past few seasons.

Katsande was one of the key figures during the Chiefs’ win last Saturday, as he bullied Wydad’s midfield and broke up their build-up plays.

At home, Katsande will have to adopt a similar approach, and even more – as he will be responsible for being the link between defence and attack.

SAMIR NURKOVIC – STRIKER

After recovering from an injury towards the end of the year, Nurkovic was expected to be included in Chiefs’ matchday squad, immediately.

But that wasn’t the case as rumors surfaced that he wasn’t happy at the club amid interest from Egyptian giants Al Ahly.

Despite the matter being resolved with Chiefs, according to reports, Nurkovic has failed to replicate last season’s exploits.

But it was his important goal that gave them the win away in Morocco last week. And that’s why he will be hoping to build on that momentum at home.

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Photo/courtesy

LEONARDO CASTRO – STRIKER

Considering that he is among a handful of players who have reached this stage of the competition – with their previous employers – Castro’s experience will be important against Wydad. This is a club he has faced on the continent a few times.

Of course, Castro is not as young as he was when he won the Champions League with Mamelodi Sundowns in 2016.

But his experience upfront is still valuable. He will have to ensure that, together with Nurkovic, they bring their scoring boots and trouble Wydad’s defense.

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