Absa Premiership

Late Fileccia brace sinks sorry Stars

2018-02-23 22:33
Andrea Fileccia (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Two late goals by Andrea Fileccia fired Maritzburg United into second place on the Absa Premiership table after a dramatic 2-1 victory over Platinum Stars at a delirious Harry Gwala Stadium on Friday.

As it happened: Maritzburg United v Platinum Stars

It was a dramatic turnaround that looked unlikely to happen after Riyaad Norodien's expert 30-yard set-piece gave Richard Ofori little chance.

Maritzburg tried to respond with two quick attacks straight after.

The first ended with a Fortune Makaringe shot forcing Visser into a low stop to his right, with the second, a vicious cross by Deolin Mekoa from the left, narrowly evading William Twala at the far post. 

United battled to create too many openings before the break and went to half time trailing 1-0.

They upped the intensity after the break and had a good chance to level in the 50th minute when Bandile Shandu’s low cross was met by Mohau Mokate, but Visser did excellently to thwart the striker. 

Mokate had another superb chance before the hour when Makaringe's hopeful ball over the top eluded the last defender offering a free header that was brilliantly saved by the goalkeeper. 

The Dikwena custodian was then spared by the post as Pogiso Sanoka's 20-yard shot was fumbled and fortuitously squeezed back into play. 

And, the intensity continued by United just over the hour when Twala inexplicably turned the ball wide from four yards out. 

Fileccia drew another wonderful save from Visser in the 66th minute with a low shot that was stopped on the line as frustration grew within the Maritzburg ranks. 

It was one-way traffic at that stage, although Enocent Mkhabela almost snatched a surprise second from a rare attack, a Gerald Phiri free-kick that was headed into the side-netting with 20 minutes to play. 

With the pressure only intensifying, it was a matter of time before the goal arrived and it came when Visser failed to hold on to Deolin Mekoa's cross and Fileccia blasted in. 

Deep in stoppage time, Charles Baloyi was penalised for bringing down Mokate in the box and Fileccia stepped up to bag all the points.

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