SuperSport reach Cup semis
Polokwane - SuperSport United’s attacking force this season has become synonymous with wasting golden scoring opportunities and it was no different in a Nedbank Cup quarterfinal match at the Peter Mokaba Stadium on Sunday.
Nonetheless, a single goal from Thabiso Nkoana, amongst a clutter of chances, was enough to hand the Matsatsantsa a 1-0 win over Jomo Cosmos.
Gavin Hunt’s men were definitely the better side throughout the 90 minutes as they controlled the flow and pace of the game.
For Cosmos, they really struggled to get hold of the ball and hardly tested the United goalkeeper at all during the match.
Still, despite SuperSport’s domination they only found one goal, but it certainly wasn’t from lack of trying.
This season Hunt’s side’s finishing has become synonymous for wasting golden opportunities in front of goal and on Sunday it was no different.
United attacked from the first whistle and saw their first chance go astray in the sixth minute when Jabulani Maluleke did well to turn his marker inside the box, but saw his 14-yard shot fired narrowly wide.
In the 13th minute Kermit Erasmus
was bitterly unlucky not to find the back of the net when a 25-yard thunderbolt from the attacking midfielder had the 'keeper beaten, but skimmed the top of the crossbar.
Eight minutes later and Maluleke was denied the opening goal by some brilliant work between the sticks from Avril Phali.
A cross from the right was poorly cleared by the Cosmos defence and fell to Maluleke 16-yards out from goal, but his snap-shot volley was superbly saved by Phali diving low to his left.
In the 24th minute Ashley Hartog should have scored for SuperSport when he got onto the end of a left-wing cross, but he headed his effort from ten-yards out wide of the target under no pressure at all.
No side was really able to create any more notable chances in the first half as the sides entered the break deadlocked at 0-0.
The second half saw United continue their dominance and eventually took the lead in the 57th minute through Nkoana.
It took a brilliant 12-yard bicycle-kick from the SuperSport man to break the deadlock after he produced the acrobatic finish into the top right-hand corner, latching onto a loose ball inside the box after a goal mouth scramble, 1-0.
After going in front United took their foot off the pedal and seemed content to hold onto the one nil lead. To be fair Cosmos never really looked like threatening the SuperSport goal.
In the end a single goal was enough to take Hunt’s men into the semi-finals.