Class for Mar­itzburg

The Star Early Edition - - SPORT - MINENHLE MKHIZE

CAPE TOWN City out-mus­cled Mar­itzburg United in a very phys­i­cal en­counter in Pi­eter­mar­itzburg yes­ter­day as they marched on to the semi­fi­nals of the MTN8.

Keanu Cupido’s strike was enough to se­cure vic­tory for the Cape side who will now face Mamelodi Sun­downs on Au­gust 25 at home and go to the Brazil­ians in the re­turn leg on September 1.

It was an­other mis­er­able day for the Team of Choice and they are still search­ing for their first vic­tory this sea­son. Mar­itzburg have lost all three their matches in all com­pe­ti­tions this sea­son, hav­ing al­ready been beaten by neighbours La­montville Golden Ar­rows and Free State Stars in the league.

It does not get any eas­ier for coach Fadlu Davids and his team as next up they host Kaizer Chiefs on Fri­day.

Amakhosi made it to the MTN8 semis by beat­ing Stars and will square up to Su­perS­port United over two For yes­ter­day’s match,both coaches made three changes to their start­ing teams. Davids dropped Yazid Atouba and Mo­hau Mokate while For­tune Makaringe was miss­ing be­cause of sus­pen­sion. He started with Kea­gan Buchanan, De­olin Mekoa and Keletso Makg­wala.

Benni McCarthy brought back Peter Leeuwen­burg, Ayanda Patosi and Siphelele Mthembu. Sage Stephens, Mpho Matsi and Matthew Rusike made way for the trio.

City’s press­ing game was im­mac­u­late as they didn’t al­low the hosts to utilise their strength of build­ing from the back.

Mthembu should have put his side in the lead af­ter 27 min­utes af­ter re­ceiv­ing a cham­pagne pass from Ayanda Patosi. But Mthembu sent his shot over the bar with the goal­keeper, Richard Ofori, at his mercy.

De­spite the miss, Mthembu en­sured City were the more threat­en­ing of the two sides as he caused all sorts of trou­ble with his strength and the abil­ity to hold up the ball and bring his team­mates into the game.

Thabo No­dada was pulling the strings in the mid­dle and kept Ndlovu quiet for much of the first half. It wasn’t sur­pris­ing that No­dada walked away with the Man of the Match award.

The goal came one minute be­fore the in­ter­val as Ofori par­ried Patosi’s cor­ner to Cupido who pounced un­marked at the far post.

Mar­itzburg came back from the in­ter­val more de­ter­mined and in­vig­o­rated as they searched for the equaliser.

Mokate made an in­stant im­pact and the game be­came more phys­i­cal in the se­cond half. Mkhize was rushed to the hospi­tal af­ter suf­fer­ing a head in­jury while try­ing to win the ball against Bokang Tl­hone. Craig Martin came on for him.

The hosts’s frus­tra­tion grew and tem­pers boiled over which com­pelled the ref­eree, Vic­tor Hlung­wane, to in­ter­vene.

No­dada was mar­vel­lous to watch for City,break­ing up all the good moves that Mar­itzburg tried to con­jure up.

City out­classed United in ev­ery depart­ment and they were the de­serv­ing win­ners. BALL CON­TROL: Bandile Shandu of Mar­itzburg United, right, takes on Thabo No­dada of Cape Town City for pos­ses­sion of the ball dur­ing their MTN8 quar­ter-fi­nal at Harry Gwala Sta­dium yes­ter­day. The Cit­i­zens won 1-0 and will next face Mamelodi Sun­downs in the two leg semi-fi­nals. The other semif-fi­nal will be con­tested be­tween Kaizer Chiefs and de­fend­ing cham­pi­ons Su­perS­port United. Dates and venues to be con­firmed.

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