Ajax’s top eight hopes dented by Celtic

2016-05-01 17:46
Lyle Lakay (Supplied)
Lyle Lakay (Supplied)

Cape Town - Ajax Cape Town’s hopes of finishing in the top eight of the Absa Premiership were dealt a big blow on Sunday when they were hammered 5-0 by Bloemfontein Celtic at the Dr Molemela Stadium.

The Urban Warriors will need to win their last three matches if they are to have a realistic chance of a top half finish and in turn the right to defend the MTN8 title they won last year.

Celtic, meanwhile, will celebrate a return to winning form at their home venue, having last tasted victory as hosts in the league back in January. Their goals were scored by Lyle Lakay (a brace), Dumisani Zuma, Musa Nyatama and Thapelo Morena.

Celtic claimed the lead in the 16th minute, with Fiston Abdul-Razak winning possession off Ndiviwe Mdabuka in midfield and putting Dumisani Zuma in on goal – the striker provided a cool finish past Anssi Jaakkola to make it 1-0.

Just over 20 minutes later Phunya Sele Sele doubled their lead, again capitalising on a poor piece of defending from Ajax. A cross from Musa Nyatama was casually cleared by Abel Mabaso and the ball fell kindly to Lyle Lakay, who cracked home a left-footed volley for a goal-of-the-season contender.

That strike was quickly followed by a fine goal from Musa Nyatama in the 39th minute – the midfielder fired home in the box after a fine set-up by Zuma to make it 3-0 – before Lakay scored again in the 42nd, with his in-swinging free kick passing untouched through the box before finding the net to leave it an amazing 4-0 in favour of Celtic at the break.

The Urban Warriors predictably made a double change at the start of the second half, sending on Franklin Cale and Nathan Paulse. The pair helped give their team’s attack something of a boost, but they were still unable to find a way back into the game.

The hosts, meanwhile, seemed to take their foot off the pedal in the second stanza, safe in the knowledge that their work in the first 45 minutes had secured the three points. This also allowed them the chance to put Vuyisile Wana on as a substitute, giving the former Moroka Swallows man his first taste of competitive action in nearly a year, after recovering from a groin injury.

Celtic eventually claimed a fifth goal at the start of added time when midfielder Thapelo Morena reacted quicker than any defender to a rebound, after Jaakkola had saved a long range shot but failed to push the ball away from the danger zone.

Ajax even missed a penalty a few minutes later, with Patrick Tignyemb saving brilliantly from Prince Nxumalo’s spot kick to ensure he finished with a clean sheet.

Celtic remain in 12th place despite the comprehensive victory, though they are now only two points adrift of their rivals Free State Stars and will be hopeful of overhauling them in what remains of the season. Ajax stay in 10th place, level with Stars and four points adrift of the top eight.

Bloemfontein Celtic (4) 5 (Zuma 16’, Lakay 38’ 42’, Nyatama 39’, Morena 90+1’)

Ajax Cape Town 0


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