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Baxter On Chiefs DStv Prem Opener

Stuart Baxter has commented on Kaizer Chiefs’ DStv Premiership opener against TS Galaxy, saying he will enter the game “a little bit blind”.

The Englishman will return to the DStv Premiership for a first time since leaving Supersport United in 2017.

Baxter, who won the DStv Premiership twice with Amakhosi in 2012/13 and 2014/15, already made a big statement ahead of the new campaign, saying he wants to build a team that can knock defending champions off their perch.

On Sunday, Chiefs start their new campaign against TS Galaxy and Baxter insisted that the opening game is always tough because you can’t scout your opponents enough and also don’t really know how strong your own team is after the reshuffle in the market.

“I think last year, the performance in CAF was good and the performance in the league was not that good. There are reasons for that. There were mental reasons, tactical reasons, COVID reasons, I can go on and on,” he said during SuperSport’s launch of the new campaign.

“I think everyone has experienced very much the same thing, injuries, everyone is saying we’re not at our full strength yet. I think that is the same thing (for us). Lot’s of people have got injuries. I saw in statistics somewhere that 180% injuries more globally during this time than in a normal year.

“Going into this one, we’re still a little bit blind even if you know your opponents. We’re still blind because there haven’t been a lot of games that you usually follow (ahead of a fixture). It’s exciting and I think that the supporters think it’s going to be a good year.”

Baxter also believes that the 2021/22 DStv Premier league campaign will a very tight campaign.

“I think it will be a very tight league. We’ve seen so many teams that were a little bit disappointed with their performances last year and have try to push it, push the motor a little bit,” he added.

“The new teams are obviously thinking we’re not going to be caught short, everybody is optimistic at this point on the season.

“Going into the first round of games, globally there is never going to be easy game anywhere. I’d say exactly the same thing that everybody has been saying. The first game, we’re all looking forward to it and we all want to win.

“There will be upsets and there will be results that maybe surprise people, but I think it’s going to be like that all year.”

Chiefs beat Galaxy in their final league game of 2020/21 to qualify for the MTN8 but were knocked out by Sundowns in the quarter-final last weekend.

Story by David Kappel (@kappilinho).