Cape Town - Cape Town City halted a two-match losing streak in the Absa Premiership with a late goal seeing them edge Free State Stars 1-0 at Athlone Stadium on Wednesday.
Benni McCarthy's side bossed proceedings in Athlone, but they struggled to break down a resolute visiting defence and appeared to be heading for a third game without a win.
But Taariq Fielies finally made the breakthrough five minutes from time to snatch all three points, which lifted his team up to third in the standings, two points off the summit.
Ea Lla Koto came into the clash on the back of a four-game unbeaten run in the league, which included three straight wins, but they showed steel against the Citizens.
The hosts had little joy in the first half as they were rebuffed time and time again by Luc Eymael's men. McCarthy was forced to change things just before the break when Victor Obinna limped off with an injury in the 40th minute, with Judas Moseamedi coming on in his place.
City continued to plug away after the restart, but Stars keeper Badra Ali Sangare remained untroubled as the second half wore on.
Just when it seemed that the spoils would be shared, Fielies popped up in the 85th minute to convert a neat attacking move for the Mother City outfit and secure victory.