Kaizer Chiefs ended 2022 on a high after they beat Golden Arrows 2-0 at the Moses Mabhida Stadium on Saturday to pull five points clear of arch-rivals Orlando Pirates in fourth place.
First-half goals from Bonfils-Caleb Bimenyimana (14′) and Edmilson Dove (37′) secured a first victory in three outings against Abafana Bes’thende as the Glamour Boys remained level on 24 points with SuperSport United.
Arrows were hoping to spring another surprise on Chiefs after winning both league encounters last season, while Arthur Zwane’s side had their sights set on a four successive victory on their travels.
The hosts made a bright start and threatened twice early on when Ryan Moon’s close-range header was expertly saved by Itumeleng Khune on five minutes before the striker made contact with a corner moments later to steer his effort wide of the right post.
But Amakhosi broke the deadlock from their first attacking foray just before the quarter-hour mark as Bimenyimana collected a pass from Keagan Dolly and produced a smart turn inside the box to drill a shot beyond Sifiso Mlungwana.
Moon was presented with another chance on 24 minutes after being teed up by Knox Mutizwa, only to see his strike soar past the right post and Mlungwana denied Bimenyimana a second goal on the half-hour mark when he tipped the striker’s shot over the crossbar.
However, Mlungwana was beaten again on 37 minutes as Dove latched onto Bimenyimana’s pass inside the area and guided his shot into the bottom right corner of the net.
Dolly nearly made it 3-0 before halftime with an angled strike from long range that Mlungwana tipped behind, while Arrows piled on the pressure in the opening stages of the second half in an attempt to get back into the contest.
Nduduzo Sibiya and Siyabonga Khumalo both tested Khune with shots from distance before Moon missed the target once more on 58 minutes after getting on the end of Divine Lunga’s delivery from a corner.
Moon’s final contribution saw him draw a comfortable save out of Khune on 65 minutes after latching onto Lunga’s pass inside the box and Mlungwana had to be alert at the other end to keep out Mduduzi Shabalala’s strike in the 76th minute from Dolly’s through-ball.
Khumalo almost pulled one back nine minutes from time when he lined up a shot from range that sailed narrowly past the left post in what was the final scare for Khune in the visiting goal.
Golden Arrows 0
Kaizer Chiefs (2) 2 (Bimenyimana 14′, Dove 37′)
Golden Arrows: S. Mlungwana, N. Nxadi, S. Ndlovu, T. Zuke (T. Mantshiyane 76′), D. Lunga, P. Mmodi, N. Dlamini, S. Gumbi (S. Khumalo 46′), N. Sibiya, R. Moon (T. Magubane 76′), K. Mutizwa.
Kaizer Chiefs: I. Khune, R. Frosler, Z. Kwinika, E. Dove, S. Hlanti, S. Zwane (Nj. Ngcobo 83′), Y. Maart, K. Dolly, Nk. Ngcobo (M. Shabalala 68′), K. Mahlatsi (K. Sekgota 54′), B. Bimenyimana (W. Duba 83′).
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