Cape Town City’s struggles in the Absa Premiership continued on Tuesday night when they were beaten 2-1 by hosts AmaZulu at the Princess Magogo Stadium in KwaMashu.
Bonginkosi Ntuli scored both goals for Usuthu (including a last-gasp winner) to see the Durban side pick up their first victory of the campaign, while the Citizens have now gone six league matches without a win.
AmaZulu enjoyed early dominance and claimed the lead on nine minutes, with striker Bonginkosi Ntuli heading home from close range. The assist was a fine cross from Talent Chawapiwa.
The hosts threatened again just past the quarter hour mark, with Tapelo Xoki testing out Peter Leeuwenburgh with a shot direct from a free kick. The goalkeeper spilt the ball initially, but recovered quickly.
City began to build their attacking confidence toward the middle of the first half, with Mpho Makola shooting wide on 20 minutes, while three minutes later Kermit Erasmus was denied by a fine save from Siyabonga Mbatha.
The Cape side continued to look dangerous up to the halftime whistle, but it was AmaZulu who held the lead at the interval.
Usuthu made a change at the start of the second half, with Chawapiwa making way for Butholezwe Ncube, while City had the first chance after the restart when Makola struck a shot off target from a free kick on 53 minutes.
Both teams looked to freshen up in attack around the hour mark, with Lehlohonolo Majoro replacing the injured Sphesihle Maduna for AmaZulu, while City introduced Shaquille Abrahams and Craig Martin in place of Bradley Ralani and Makola respectively.
The Cape side soon had some joy in attack, with debutant Mark Mayambela meeting a cross with a powerful volley on 65 minutes – his effort hit the underside of the crossbar, bounced off the sprawling Mbatha and was eventually forced home to make it 1-1.
The teams traded attacks and scoring chances in what remained of the game, with AmaZulu pushing to secure a first win of the campaign, while City posed a notable threat on the counter attack.
Yet the game looked set for a stalemate until deep into injury time, when Ntuli broke free of the defence and slid a low shot through the legs of the goalkeeper to secure a priceless win for the hosts.
AmaZulu move up two places to 14th on the log, while City remain in 10th spot.
The Cape side will be back in Premiership action on 25 October when they host Maritzburg United, while AmaZulu’s next league game will be away to Baroka FC on 27 October.
AmaZulu (1) 2 (Ntuli 9’ 90+5’)
Cape Town City (0) 1 (Mayambela 65’)
AmaZulu: Mbatha, M. Gumede, Xoki, Khumalo, Sikhakhane, Karuru (De Jong 71’), Vilakazi, Sithebe, Chawapiwa (Ncube 46’), Maduna (Majoro 59’), Ntuli
Cape Town City: Leeuwenburgh, Mkhize, Fielies, Edmilson, Kewuti, Mokeke, Nodada, Makola (Martin 63’), Mayambela (Putsche 70’), Ralani (Abrahams 60’), Erasmus. SuperSport