Stuart Baxter (Getty Images)
- Kaizer Chiefs coach Stuart Baxter is yet to taste a league defeat against rivals Orlando Pirates in the Soweto Derby.
- The Scotsman has recorded three victories and four draws in the seven previous Premiership clashes.
- The 67-year-old will again be in the dugout on Saturday at Orlando Stadium, hoping to keep that record intact.
Kaizer Chiefs head coach Stuart Baxter laughed off the idea that he had “secret formulas” for not suffering a league defeat against Orlando Pirates in the Soweto Derby.
On Saturday, Baxter will lead Amakhosi in his eighth Premiership clash against the Buccaneers.
In his first three-year spell at Chiefs, Baxter faced off against Pirates six times, winning twice and drawing four matches.
His second spell kicked off in May last year after Chiefs sacked Gavin Hunt and in August, Baxter clinched the Carling Black Label Cup against Pirates in a penalty shootout.
When November came around, a Keagan Dolly brace ensured bragging rights for the Glamour Boys in 2-1 Premiership victory.
Stuart Baxter’s league Soweto Derby record:
Orlando Pirates 1-1 Kaizer Chiefs
Kaizer Chiefs 0-0 Orlando Pirates
Orlando Pirates 1-1 Kaizer Chiefs
Kaizer Chiefs 1-0 Orlando Pirates
Kaizer Chiefs 2-0 Orlando Pirates
Orlando Pirates 0-0 Kaizer Chiefs
Kaizer Chiefs 2-1 Orlando Pirates
While remaining coy on his secret, Baxter told reporters on Thursday that the team which plays “normal” usually comes out victorious at the end of 90 minutes.
“I’m not going to profess that I have any secret formulas; I think that is a recipe for disaster,” Baxter said.
“Every time I go into a derby, then you try to perform your best on the day; the team that usually wins the derby is the team that plays normal, not the team that plays outstanding.
“The derbies are usually anxious, and they (the players) are usually worried, looking at the clock and usually over-hyped and get red cards and make decisions that lose the game.
“So, the team that plays normal are usually the team that wins the game.
“We will try and be inspired by the occasion and keep our feet on the ground and keeping our motivation at the right level.
“And then have a game plan and try to execute that, and if you do that, then you did everything you can.”
Meanwhile, in his dissertation on Pirates, the former SuperSport United and Bafana Bafana mentor has not seen changes over the years in the way they play the game.
“If you look at Pirates throughout the history there, they have a certain style, no matter which coach comes in or which players they have,” he said.
“They have certain ethics that they uphold – Chiefs are much the same but in a different way – but then a coach comes in and puts down different strategies, and then they get a bit of a tweak, and we’re the same.”
Baxter continued: “Then we get to the derby, you look at your opponents, and you say, ‘well, can we tweak something on the day to make us more unpleasant for our opponents?’ and we will try to do that.
“What we do know is that the Pirates players will play very quickly, they will mix their game, they will go behind you sometimes, they will play in front of you sometimes, and it will be a very physical game because it is a derby.
“The mental part is that we’ve got to keep ourselves calm, yet aggressive.
“We’ve got to keep ourselves focussed yet spontaneous; you don’t want to get bogged down with the event.
“You’ve still got to perform. You should not be anxious; you’ve got to be motivated and not fearful but inspired,” Baxter concluded.
Saturday’s match kicks off at 15:30.