Wits snatch point off Celtic
Bloemfontein - Bloemfontein Celtic maintained their unbeaten home record this season when they drew 0-0 against BidVest Wits in a disappointing Absa Premiership match played at the Seisa Ramabodu Stadium on Sunday.
Celtic should have collected three points but poor finishing let them down.
For the Students this was a valuable away point for which they worked and defended hard for.
They rode their luck in a first half in which the home side had the upper hand against a well organised Wits side that were content to sit back and soak up the pressure.
Said Wits coach Roger de Sa: “We came here to win. It was not a great game but at the end of the day it was a good away point.”
Celtic coach Clinton Larsen said he was happy with his side but added: “We should have wrapped up the match in the first half. But we wasted chances.”
Celtic could have a reasonable complaint that they should have been awarded a penalty in the 30th minute when Sipho Mngomezulu appeared to handle Moses Spandeel’s shot inside his penalty area.
This after the Clever Boys keeper Darren Keet did well to close down Spandeel after the Celtic striker had beaten the offside trap and after rounding Keet Spandeel took too long lining up his shot and allowed the Wits defence to regroup.
Spandeel fired his shot straight at Mngomezulu who was given a lucky let-off.
Celtic took the initiative from the kick-off.
Giant striker Nathan Paulse shot wide in the second minute.
Three minutes later Ryan Chapman forced Celtic keeper to divert the Wits midfielder’s shot from the right wing.
Celtic should have taken the lead in the eighth minute, but Thokozani Mshengu headed a tremendous Spandeel cross wide when he had the goal at his mercy.
A heavy rain storm midway through the first half made the playing conditions greasy and the ball difficult to control for the players.
Celtic’s out of sorts midfielder Prince Olomu had a shot deflected for a corner in the 35th minute.
Then on loan striker Siphelele Mthembu missed a glorious chance to put the home side ahead in the 40th minute after a dreadful mistake from Keet.
The South African under-23 keeper miskicked a clearance that landed at Mthembu’s feet.
But to his credit Keet threw himself at the ball and rescued the situation with some desperate goalkeeping.
Mthembu then missed two more chances to break the deadlock in the 43rd and 47th minutes.
Mthembu, who is on loan from Orlando Pirates, looks short on confidence.
Phunya Sele Sele midfielder Hlompo Kekana in desperation fired a long range shot that flew past the woodwork in the 55th minute as frustration started to creep into Celtic.
Keet did well again in the 64th and 65th minutes when he pulled off good saves from Clifford Mulenga and Spandeel respectively.
But the players ran out of steam and the game fizzled in a dull goalless draw with neither side manage to lift themselves in the latter stages of the match.