KAITANO TEMBO’S SuperSport United kept the pressure on leaders Kaizer Chiefs when they defeated Highlands Park 2-0 in an Absa Premiership match at the Lucas Moripe on Friday night.
As a result, Matsatsantsa remained second on the league standings – seven points behind the leaders, Chiefs, while the Lions of the North remained sixth on the log.
Tembo’s men dominated the opening exchanges with Thabo Mnyamane and Teboho Mokoena looking lively for the hosts.
Mnyamane and Mokoena were both denied by Highlands Park goalkeeper Marlon Heugh in the first 15 minutes of the match.
However, the goalkeeper was beaten by Mnyamane in the 19th minute as the attacker netted from Mokoena’s low cross to make 1-0 to SuperSport.
The Lions of the North then suffered a blow as Heugh was substituted after picking up an injury on the half-hour mark.
The visitors managed to create chances after the half-hour mark, but they could not convert them as Peter Shalulile missed the target with a header.
The momentum was with Owen Da Gama’s men and Lindokuhle Mbatha missed a sitter with a header from close range.
SuperSport were leading 1-0 during the half-time, thanks to Mnyamane’s well-taken goal.
The Lions of the North created goal scoring opportunities, but they continued to waste them as Mokete Mogaila was denied by SuperSport keeper Ronwen Williams in the 56th minute.
Shaluile fired straight at South Africa international Williams after the hosts’ defence was exposed after the hour-mark.
SuperSport managed to double their lead against the run of play in the 71st minute as Aubrey Modiba set-up Bradley Grobler, who scored with a good shot to make it 2-0 to the hosts.
Bongani Khumalo, who is a defender by trade, was introduced by coach Tembo in the dying minutes of the match.
The hosts were able to contain the visitors and ultimately, SuperSport secured a 2-0 victory over Highlands Park on the night.
Two other Zimbabweans – veteran defender Onismor Bhasera and winger Kuda Mahachi featured for SuperSport United, with the latter being introduced as a late substitute as Tembo looked to close shop.
Yesterday, Baroka scored two goals in the final eight minutes of regulation time to hold Orlando Pirates to a 2-2 draw at Peter Mokaba in Polokwane.
Linda Mntambo and Kabelo Dlamini fired the Buccaneers into a two-goal lead, but an own goal from Happy Jele and a 90th minute strike from Gerald Phiri Jnr earned the hosts a point.
The result moves the Buccaneers up to sixth place on the log standings, 14 points behind log leaders and fierce rivals, Kaizer Chiefs. Baroka jump to 11th, having still to win a game on home soil this season.
Pirates held a narrow lead at the break, thanks to a superbly worked goal in the 40th minute.
Vincent Pule picked out Mntambo’s run with a neat pass and after gliding past Denwin Farmer with his first touch, the midfielder found the back of the net with his second, striking the ball past Elvis Chipezeze from the edge of the area.
Dlamini made it 2-0 eight minutes after the break, as he enhanced his ‘super-sub’ status with a goal two minutes after making his way off the bench.
Chipezeze’s failed clearance fell to the Siphesihle Ndlovu, whose touch took the ball into the path of Dlamini, and he set himself before firing the ball into the roof of the net.
It all fell apart for the visitors late on as Jele, on his return from suspension, put the ball into the back of his own net to halve the deficit in the 82nd minute.
Bakgaga duly levelled matters in the 90th minute as the Pirates failed to clear their lines from a long throw-in before the ball eventually fell to Phiri who hit a rasping shot past Wayne Sandilands to earn the hosts a point. — SuperSport.com