SuperSport hold off Maritzburg

2015-04-04 17:08
Jeremy Brockie (Supplied)

Pietermaritzburg - SuperSport United faced a barrage of Maritzburg United attacks in the second half, but they were resolute enough to secure a 1-0 win at Harry Gwala Stadium in a PSL encounter on Saturday afternoon.

The goal came in the 38th minute courtesy of New Zealand international Jeremy Brockie, who netted his fourth league goal in seven starts since he was signed by Gordon Igesund in January.

The 27-year-old’s hot run of form had been well documented in the build-up to the match, as well as his combination with former Kaizer Chiefs target man Kingston Nkhatha. It was indeed that partnership that broke the deadlock after an opening period that had delivered nothing in the way of goal mouth action.

Bafana Bafana’s Thuso Phala had done well to play in Nkhatha down the left channel. The Zimbabwean cut in and squared the ball across the face of goal where Brockie had positioned himself perfectly. The striker was composed, tapping in from close range with his left foot to leave Maritzburg goalkeeper Virgil Vries with no chance.

That was the game’s first shot on target, and it sparked the home side into life as midfielder Thami Mkhize saw a shot from distance well held by SuperSport shot-stopper Ronwen Williams just a minute later.

The game finally got the intensity it needed in the second half. Maritzburg coach Steve Komphela sacrificed the bulky Terrance Mandaza for the more mobile Mohammed Anas up front, and the Team of Choice came out with more energy than they had displayed in the opening period.

But despite Maritzburg’s attacking intent, it was SuperSport who should have been 2-0 up on 56 minutes. Maritzburg holding midfielder Ryan de Jongh had the ball pinched off him by David Mathebula in a dangerous position. That left Mathebula with only Vries to beat, but the goalkeeper did phenomenally well to squander the opportunity.

The save of the game came just after the hour mark. Mondli Cele showed good skill to send the SuperSport defence the wrong way before blasting his shot at goal from inside the area. The effort was deflected, and Williams launched himself to his right as he clawed the ball out of the top left corner to keep his side ahead.

By the end it had become frantic – Maritzburg launching men forward in search of an equaliser. But it was not to be as attack after attack was scrambled away by Igesund’s men.

Substitute Mohau Mokate had a golden chance to grab a point for his side when a failed SuperSport clearance left him with time and space inside the area. But Williams was on hand once more, making himself big as Mokate saw his shot well saved as the frustration at Harry Gwala reached its peak.

The result sees SuperSport move into the top half of the table, three points clear of Maritzburg with six rounds of fixtures remaining.

Read more on:    maritzburg united  |  supersport united  |  psl  |  soccer

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