Zimbabwe News and Internet Radio

Billiat ends goal drought

By Nigel Matongorere

Warriors and Kaizer Chiefs star Khama Billiat finally broke his scoring duck in the Absa Premiership for Amakhosi when he netted in the 2-2 draw on Wednesday night against Bloemfontein Celtic at FNB Stadium.

Zimbabwean stars Willard Katsande and Khama Billiat in Kaizer Chiefs colours
Zimbabwean stars Willard Katsande and Khama Billiat in Kaizer Chiefs colours

Billiat, who made a sensational Bosman ruling move from defending champions Mamelodi Sundowns during the off-season, had started life at Naturena very well.

However, the Zimbabwean had failed to find the back of the net in four previous league games despite the lively start to his Chiefs career.

Billiat’s only goal for Amakhosi had arrived at the weekend when he scored in the 2-2 draw with SuperSport United in the MT8 semi-final first leg clash.

The wait for his first league goal ended in the 37th minute of the match when he produced a trademark run off the shoulder of the last defender before racing to meet Siphelele Ntshangase’s through ball.

From there on, Billiat was now one-on-one against Celtic goalkeeper Patrick Tignyemb and there was no way the Zimbabwean was going to miss in such a situation.

Billiat rolled his shot under the diving Tignyemb to give Chiefs the lead and register his first league strike for the Phefeni Glamour Boys.

Khotso Malope doubled Chiefs lead after the break but the home side could not hold onto the two-goal lead though.

Celtic hit back with two quick-fire strikes from Menzi Masuku and Ndumiso Mabena in the last 14 minutes of the game.

While Billiat ended his league draught, Chiefs though are still waiting for their first win of the season which left their new coach Giovanni Solinas worried about the defensive mistakes.

“We played well, we moved the ball very well and we created a lot of chances, I agree we played a beautiful game. But, in every game we make mistakes,” he conceded.

“These mistakes cost us points, so we need to fix these mistakes. However, it’s not only individual problems. I repeat, the fault lies not only with one player.

“We need to solve this problem as a collective because it’s not only the defensive department. In front of them we have six players, no? The back four and in front of them there are six [more] players.

“So the job [of defending] is not only for the back four, we need the collective. In my idea, the job of defence is a collective. We need to participate in this job together as a team – we defend as a team.

“So we need to fix these mistakes, tomorrow [Thursday] analyse the game with video and turn our focus to the next game because we don’t have time for crying. After two days we have a big, important game.”

Warriors coach Sunday Chidzambwa has already expressed his delight with Billiat’s form and that of captain Knowledge Musona for his Anderlecht side ahead of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifier against Congo next weekend.

Zimbabwe travel to Brazzaville on September 9 for a Group G qualifier against the hosts as qualifying for Cameroon 2019 resumes.

Musona, who joined Anderlecht from Oostende KV this summer, netted his first for the club in a 2-1 defeat to Club Brugge the weekend.

“When you see what happened this weekend, Khama scoring and having an assist at the back of a superb performance and Musona scoring as well, it gives you that satisfaction and hope as a coach,” Chidzambwa told the Daily News earlier this week.

“So, I’m not pessimistic about this department — strike force; we also have Evans Rusike, who can make good passes and also score and a number of youngsters who can naturally fit in. I think we will be able to score some goals in Congo.

“My hope is that these guys would be able to replicate the same form when they come for national duty.”