Celtic edge Maritzburg in midweek clash – ABSA Premiership 2017/18

Kabelo Mahlasela of Bloemfontein Celtic celebrates goal with teammates during the Absa Premiership 2017/18 football match between Cape Town City FC and Bloemfontein Celtic at Athlone Stadium, Cape Town on 17 October 2017 ©Chris Ricco/BackpagePix

Graeme Jackson

Tuesday Oct 31, 2017. 21:25

Jacky Motshegwa scored the only goal of the game as Bloemfontein Celtic defeated Maritzburg United 1-0 in an Absa Premiership clash at Dr Molemela Stadium on Tuesday evening.

Phunya Sele Sele move to 15 points from nine games and assume third place on the log, while the Team of Choice drop two places to 13th with nine points from their eight outings.

The teams had little to separate them in the early minutes, with the midfield battle notable for its ferocity, and chances were scarce in the opening quarter hour.

However, in the 16th minute, Celtic claimed the ascendancy through Jacky Motshegwa, as the 29-year-old took advantage of a defensive error from the hosts to beat Richard Ofori with a well-placed effort.

Maritzburg responded strongly to going behind, with the likes of Lebohang Maboe and Evans Rusike looking dangerous in attack, but they were unable to find a way through the hosts’ defence.

Celtic almost doubled their advantage in the 35th minute, with a patient build-up allowing midfielder Lantshene Phalane a shooting chance, but he struck his effort over the crossbar.

The second half continued in a similar vein to the first, with the teams cancelling each other out in midfield. Maritzburg made a bold tactical move by bringing on both Sheldon van Wyk and Pogiso Sanoka at the restart.

The Team of Choice gradually asserted control of proceedings in their search for an equaliser, but Celtic’s well-organised defence gave nothing away and were able to see out the 90 minutes without conceding.

The Bloemfontein team will be back in action this weekend when they face Platinum Stars in a Telkom Knockout quarterfinal, while Maritzburg will only play again on November 21 against Polokwane City.

Bloemfontein Celtic (1) 1 (Motshegwa 16’)

Maritzburg United 0

Celtic: Tignyemb, Letlabika (Lubisi 62’), Rikhotso, Pfumbidzai, Ndengane, Baloyi, Phalane, Hotto, Motshegwa (Mahlasela 66’), Mabena, Letsoalo (Nyondo 81’)

Maritzburg: Ofori, Onyango (Sanoka 46’), Fransman, Xulu, Ndlovu, Mokate, Maboe, Shandu, Atouba (van Wyk 46’), Saal, Rusike (Mekoa 74’)

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Polokwane edge out Usuthu – ABSA Premiership 2017/18

Samuel Mensah Darpoh of AmaZulu FC gets the ball before Sammy Seabi of Polokwane City FC during the Absa Premiership 2017/18 game between AmaZulu and Polokwane City at King Zwelithini Stadium, Durban on 18 October 2017 © Gerhard Duraan/BackpagePix

Austin Ditlhobolo

Wednesday Oct 18, 2017. 21:52

Polokwane City recorded a 3-2 win over AmaZulu in an Absa Premiership match at the King Zwelithini Stadium on Wednesday night.

As a result, Usuthu slip down to 10th spot on the league table, while Rise and Shine move up to 11th spot on the log.

Usuthu started the match brightly – keeping possession nicely as they looked to unlock the Rise and Shine defence.

However, the visitors were awarded a free-kick in a Usuthu’s half and Ndivhuwo Ravhuhali scored from the set-piece in the 11th minute.

Despite having conceded, AmaZulu continue to attack in search of the equalizing goal with Butholezwe Ncube stamping his authority in the middle of the park.

Walter Maponyane, the Polokwane defender, was booked just after the half-hour mark with pressure mounting on the Rise and Shine defence.

However, the score was 1-0 to Polokwane at half-time after Polokwane keeper made some good saves to deny AmaZulu, while Boysen Mbatha missed the target from range.

Usuthu were able to restore parity through Rhulani Manzini’s free-kick which beat Chigova hands down – eight minuted after the restart.

Unfortunately, Polokwane restored their lead two minutes later through Walter Musona, who netted to make it 2-1 to Polokwane.

Cavin Johnson, the AmaZulu head coach, responded by introducing experienced forward Siyabonga Nomvethe on the hour-mark.

The home side pushed forward in numbers in search of the equalizing goal in the late stages of the match.

But the visitors extended their lead through Rodney Ramagalela, who scored with a decent shot in the 85th minute.

Mhlengi Cele did grab a late consolation goal for AmaZulu in the 90th minute and Polokwane managed to secure a 3-2 win over the hosts.

AmaZulu (0) 2 (Manzini 53′, Cele 90′)

Polokwane (1) 3 (Ravhuhali 11′, Musona 55′, Ramagalela 85′)

AmaZulu: S.Mbatha, M.Gumede, Mtsweni, Mngqibisa, Ouro-Akoriko (C), Darpoh (Mnguni 84′), Ncube, B.Mbatha (Nomvethe 60′), Ncobeni, Cele, Manzini (Ntsundwana 84′).

Polokwane: Chigova, Senenya, Ravhuhali, Mbonani, Maponyane, Seabi, Phiri, Musona (Hlongwane 72′, Ramagalela, Maluleke, Ndou (Booi 82′).

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Mazembe edge FUS in Lubumbashi

Rainford Kalaba of TP Mazembe ©Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

Bertin Basson

Sunday Oct 01, 2017. 18:15

TP Mazembe will take a narrow 1-0 lead to Rabat following their victory in a 2017 CAF Confederations Cup first-leg, semifinal showdown at the Stade TP Mazembe on Sunday.

The defending CAFCC champions were in the driving seat for most of the clash, and would’ve boasted a more dominant advantage had it not been for FUS Rabat goalkeeper Aymane Majid.

Majid was a one-man barrier at times throughout the match, as attention now turns to the reverse fixture in Morocco.

The Ravens, though, got off to the perfect start as Ben Malango found the back of the net in the 14th minute. The goal his sixth of the campaign.

FUS fought their way back into the game with Mehdi Bettache a threat either side of the break. First forcing Sylvain Gbohouo into a good save, before seeing his curling shot narrowly wide minutes after the interval.

Mazembe ended the game on the front foot with Majid called into constant action. The goal-minder with a particularly stunning save to deny Adama Traore late on.

In the end, Mazembe failed to add another to their tally, but will still fancy their chances of defending the crown they won 12 months ago.

The reverse fixture will take place in the Moroccan capital on the weekend of the 20th-22nd of October 2017.

The aggregate winners will take on either SuperSport United or Club Africain in the final.

In Atteridgeville earlier today, Matsatsantsa were held to a 1-1 stalemate to give the Tunisians a distinct advantage heading into the second-leg in Radès.

TP Mazembe (1) 1 (Malango 14′)

FUS Rabat (0) 0

TP Mazembe: Gbohouo; Kasusula, Mondeko, Chongo, Issama – Adjei Nii, Sinkala (Koffi 63′) – Traore, Kalaba (Asante 81′), Ushindi (Meschack 73′) – Malango

FUS Rabat: Majid; Semmoumy, Aguerd, Sy, El Bassil (Benarif 67′) – Boulhroud, Khalis, Skouma – Diakite, Bettache (Benlamachi 61′), Yansane (El Bahraoui 75′)

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Free State Stars edge out Polokwane City – ABSA Premiership 2017/18

Daniel Cardoso of Kaizer Chiefs challenges Mohammed Anas of Free State Stars during the 2017 Maize Cup match between Free State Stars and Kaizer Chiefs on the 15 July 2017 at James Motlatsi Stadium, Orkney © Sydney Mahlangu /BackpagePix

Austin Ditlhobolo

Tuesday Sep 19, 2017. 21:49

Free State Stars overcame Polokwane City 3-2 in an Absa Premiership match at the Old Peter Mokaba Stadium on Tuesday.

As a result, Ea Lla Koto climbed up to the 12th spot on the league table, while Rise and Shine drop down to position 13 on the log.

The match got off to a lively start and it was Ea Lla Koto, who broke the deadlock through Mohammed Anas 15 minutes into the game.

The Ghanaian striker beat Polokwane goalkeeper George Chigova from close range following an error by the latter.

The Zimbabwean shot-stopper was then beaten again in the 23rd minute and once again it was Anas, who made it 2-0 to Stars.

Ea Lla Koto were in complete control of the match and they extended their lead a minute later, and this time it was Paulus Masehe.

The Stars veteran made it 3-0 with a shot from range, but he then sent off in the 38th minute after collecting his second yellow card.

Nevertheless, Stars’ 10 men managed to contain Polokwane in the remaining minutes of the first-half and the score was 3-0 to the visitors at half-time.

Polokwane pushed for their first goal of the match after the restart and they managed to pull one back through Zimbabwean Walter Musona.

The first-half substitute headed past Stars shot-stopper Badre Ali Sangare, who was beaten for the first time on the night.

The Ivorian keeper then denied Puleng Tlolane in the 66th minute as Rise and Shine continued to pile pressure on the Ea Lla Koto defence.

But Sangare was beaten in the 80th minute when Sammy Seabi scored with a header, but Stars stood firm at the back in the remaining minutes and they won 3-2.

Polokwane (0) 2 (Musona 58′, Seabi 80′)

FS Stars (3) 3 (Anas 15′, 23′, Masehe 24′)

Polokwane: Chigova, Tshehla, Tshilo, Hlongwane, Mbonani, Seabi, Jacobs (Musona 30′), Mngomezulu (Ndou 64′), Maluleke, Ramagalela, Tlolane (Mokondelela 89′).

FS Stars: Sangare, Masehe, Mobbie, Keita, Phungwayo, Mbhele, Vilakazi, Potsane (Mashego 60′), Manqele (Abbubakar 41′), Anas (73′), Jantjie.

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Rabat edge Sfaxien in first leg

Saad Aitkhorsa (L) of FUS Rabat vies for the ball with Aliassou Sanou (R) Rivers Unitedduring the 2017 CAF Confederations Cup game between FATH Union Sport and Rivers United in Rabat, Morocco on 7 July 2017 © BackpagePix

Graeme Jackson

Saturday Sep 16, 2017. 23:33

FUS Rabat narrowly defeated CS Sfaxien on Saturday night to hold the advantage in their CAF Confederation Cup quarterfinal tie.

The Moroccan hosts won 1-0 in the teams’ first-leg clash at the Stade de FUS in Rabat on Saturday night.

Tunisian side Sfaxien, who are three-time champions of this continental competition, will look to turn the tie around in the second leg on home soil.

Faith Union Sport struck the game’s decisive goal in the 19th minute through midfielder Karim Benarif and they held firm in defence to ensure they have a strong foothold in the tie.

The return match will be held at the Stade Taieb Mhiri in Sfax next Friday night. The aggregate winners of the tie will face either TP Mazembe or Al-Hilal Al-Ubayyid in the semifinals.

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SuperSport edge Chiefs to seal MTN8 semifinal spot – MTN8 2017

Jeremy Brockie of Supersport United celebrates goal during 2017 MTN8 match between Kaizer Chiefs and Supersport United at Moses Mabhida Stadium, Durban South Africa on 12 August 2017 ©Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

Bertin Basson

Saturday Aug 12, 2017. 22:44

Jeremy Brockie’s sixth minute strike proved to be the difference between SuperSport United and Kaizer Chiefs, as Matsatsantsa sealed their place in the 2017 MTN8 semifinals with a 1-0 win at the Moses Mabhida Stadium on Saturday evening.

Different season, same problems for the Amakhosi who failed to capitalize on a catalogue of chances throughout the 90 as another chance at silverware for Steve Komphela goes abegging.

SuperSport join Bidvest Wits and Cape Town City in the next round with Mamelodi Sundowns and Maritzburg United to do battle on Sunday.

Eric Tinkler’s influence was noticeable as early as the sixth minute as a superb counter-attack goal opened the scoring on the night.

Reneilwe Letsholonyane, Bradley Grobler and Brockie linking up for a wonderful goal; capped off by the New Zealand international who skipped past Lorenzo Gordinho before firing past Itumeleng Khune, 0-1.

The goal breathed some urgency into Chiefs who hit the post in the 23rd minute through a deflected shot from Siphiwe Tshabalala.

Ronwen Williams was then called into action to deny Bernard Parker as the Glamour Boys headed into the break on top, but a goal down.

A similar pattern would follow in the second with Chiefs dominating both possession and territory.

Parker and Hendrick Ekstein would also hit the woodwork on a night where luck wasn’t on the Glamour Boys side with SuperSport made to absorb wave-after-wave of attack.

Tinkler’s men would not buckle under the amount of relentless pressure and successfully held on to book their place in the final four.

Kaizer Chiefs (0) 0

SuperSport United (1) 1 (Brockie 6′)

Kaizer Chiefs: Khune; Mphahlele (Jayiya 82′), Gordinho, Mathoho, Masilela – Maluleka, Katsande, Ekstein, Tshabalala – Parker (Malongoane 73′), Paez

SuperSport United: Williams; Kekana, Gould, Daniels (Mashamaite 80′), Modiba – Furman, Letsholonyane, Alexander (Phala 46′) – Wome (Nhlapo 68′), Grobler, Brockie

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Rwanda edge Tanzania to set up Uganda showdow

Staff Reporter

Saturday Jul 22, 2017. 17:38

Rwanda will take on Uganda in the final round of 2018 African Nations Championship (CHAN) Central East Zone qualifiers, following an aggregate win over Tanzania.

The Wasps were held to a goalless draw by the Taifa Stars in a second round, second-leg clash at the Stade Regional Nyamirambo, but advance following a favourable result in Mwanza.

The first-leg in Tanzania ended in a 1-1 stalemate.

Rwanda were made to defend tirelessly in the final exchanges of the second-leg clash in Kigali, but did just about enough to see home an aggregate victory.

As a result of their aggregate win, the 2016 CHAN hosts will take on Uganda for a place in next year’s showpiece – to be held in Kenya.

The Cranes booked their place in the final round of qualifying following a 5-1 thumping of South Sudan earlier today.

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Angola edge closer to 2018 CHAN

Nelson Coquenao Da Luz of Angola challenged by Damien Ballisson of Mauritius during the Cosafa Castle Cup match between Mauritius and Angola at the Moruleng Stadium in Rustenburg on 25 June 2017 ©Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

Graeme Jackson

Sunday Jul 16, 2017. 15:50

Angola have taken another step toward qualifying for the 2018 African Nations Championship (CHAN) after they defeated hosts Mauritius 1-0 on Sunday.

The Southern Zone second round, first leg qualifier at Stade Anjalay in Belle Vue Maurel saw the Palancas Negras claim the narrow victory thanks to an first-half goal from Ricardo Job.

The second leg match will be held at the November 11 Stadium in Luanda next weekend, with Angola heavily favoured to advance.

The aggregate winners will face either Madagascar or Mozambique in the final phase of qualification.

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Al-Merrikh edge Ferroviário in Omdurman

Shaiboub of Hilal (l) and Wawa Baskal of Merreikh (r)

Bertin Basson

Wednesday Jun 21, 2017. 08:37

Al-Merrikh ensured that things remain tight in Group A of the 2017 CAF Champions League following a 2-1 win over Ferroviário Beira at the Al-Merrikh Stadium on Tuesday evening.

The Sudanese giants recovering from an early setback to take all three points in Omdurman, as they moved level with their Mozambican counterparts.

Etoile du Sahel and Al Hilal are in action later today with the Tunisians afforded the opportunity to move six points clear.

Maninho found the back of the net for the visitors after only 16 minutes as they made the perfect start.

Al-Zaeem, though, fought back and pulled level through Elsamani Saadeldin before the break as the two teams headed for the tunnel at the half with the score at 1-1.

Ahmed Abdalla’s 59th minute strike would prove to be the winner for the hosts as Al-Merrikh keep their chances of reaching the knockout stages alive.

They next face rivals Al-Hilal while Ferroviário welcome Etoile to Beira.

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Rivers United edge out 10-man KCCA

Fredrick Obomate of Rivers United FC (Nigeria) and Allan Okello of KCCA FC (Uganda)

Austin Ditlhobolo

Tuesday Jun 20, 2017. 19:40

Rivers United defeated Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) FC 2-1 in the CAF Confederation Cup Group A match at the Yakubu Gowon Stadium in Port Harcourt on Tuesday.

The wins takes the Nigerian outfit to the third spot on the Group A table, while Ugandan side drop down to the fourth spot.

Bernard Ovoke opened the scoring just a minute into the match when he hit the back of the net to make it 1-0 to Rivers following a well-taken corner-kick.

In the 15th minute, Rivers attacker Frederick Obomate also put his name on the scoresheet when he scored to make it 2-0 to the home side.

It was 2-1 to Rivers at the interval after Geoffrey Serunkuma hit the back of the net for KCCA on the stroke of half-time.

KCCA were forced to make a change six minutes after the restart after goalkeeper Douglas Kisembo went down injured.

The substitute keeper Benjamin Ochan was not seriously tested by the Rivers as KCCA pushed forward in numbers in search of the equalising goal.

However, KCCA defender Habib Kavuma was red-carded in the dying minutes and Rivers held on to their lead, and they won 2-1 at home.

Rivers (2) 2 (Ovoke 1′, Obomate 15′)

KCCA (1) 1 (Serunkuma 45′)

Rivers: Akande, Nweke, Douhadji, Ovoke (Odah 78′), Olalekan, Zoumana, Obomate (Igbinoba 61′), Sakin, Odumegwu (Keumian 73′), Atuloma, Saka.

KCCA: Kisembo (Ochan 51′), Okot, Awany, Kavuma; Poloto (Kayizzy 68), Muzamiru, Masiko, Muleme; Okello (Ntege 58′) Serunkuma, Nsibambi.

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