Kaizer Chiefs missed the chance to move 10 points clear at the top of the Absa Premiership after a shock 1-0 loss to relegation-threatened AmaZulu on Saturday night..
AmaKhosi coach Ernst Middendorp made one change from the Soweto derby victory over Orlando Pirates, with Anthony Agay and Siphosakhe Ntiya-Ntiya replacing Willard Katsande and Kgosto Moleko.
Chiefs had the confidence coming into the encounter but they were quite sloppy in the opening exchanges, particularly in the half although Usuthu were unable to take advantage.
The hosts should have been ahead on 29 minutes when Lebogang Manyama’s superb through-ball found an un-marked Leonardo Castro, who somehow guided his first-time strike wide of the post with only Siyabonga Mbatha to beat.
The AmaKhosi were made to rue that miss shortly before the halftime break as Talent Chawapiwa did well to pick out Bongninkosi Ntuli, who slotted home at the far post for his 12th league goal of the season.
Middendorp responded with a double change at the start of the second half as Khama Billiat and Bernard Parker replaced Kearyn Baccus and Agay as the hosts went in search of an equaliser.
Billiat’s arrival almost resulted in the equaliser as the Zimbabwean delivered a telling cross into Manyama, who could only guide his wide of the upright from six-yards out.
While Chiefs continued pushing for the equaliser, they did leave themselves open to counter-attacks from the visitors but the Usuthu attackers were let down by their decision-making in the final third.
Billiat was also guilty of squandering a couple big openings, as the Zimbabwean winger went wide with two close-range headers after 85 minutes after the Usuthu defence went to sleep.
Chiefs were lucky not to concede a second after George Maluleka deflected his cross onto his own crossbar, however that proved to be the final chance of the game as AmaZulu clinch a vital win in their pursuit of safety.