Cape Town - Orlando Pirates got their New Year off to a great start as they defeated
Baroka FC 3-1 in their Absa Premiership clash at Orlando Stadium on
An early header from Musa Nyatama was followed by a brace from the
excellent Luvoyo Memela as the Buccaneers moved into fifth place on 23
points from 16 matches (level with fourth-placed Kaizer Chiefs), pushing
Bakgaga down to sixth on 22 points from 16 clashes.
Pirates were quick out of the blocks and claimed the lead as early as
the sixth minute, with Musa Nyatama getting on the end of Luvoyo
Memela’s cross to head home from close range.
On the quarter hour mark another corner kick from Memela picked out
defender Innocent Maela, but his glancing header rebounded off the far
post and away to safety.
Yet in the 19th minute the Buccaneers doubled their lead, with Justin
Shonga and Thabiso Kutumela combining to tee up Memela, who easily fired
home from close range to make it 2-0.
Just under 10 minutes later it was 3-0, with Memela netting his second
of the night. This time he exchanged passes with Thabo Matlaba on the
edge of the box before shooting beyond the reach of goalkeeper Virgil
Baroka appeared to be down and out, but on the half hour mark they were
thrown a lifeline when Gladwin Shitolo brought down Lucky Nguzana with a
clumsy foul to concede a penalty.
Mduduzi Mdantsane converted from the spot to pull one back for Bakgaga,
though he was soon substituted by the more attack-minded Talent
Just a few minutes into the second half Nyatama almost scored a
carbon-copy of the goal he netted in the first, though this time his
header was straight at the ‘keeper, who did just enough to keep the
Pirates ran out of steam as the second half wore on, with their midfield
struggling to reassert the control they enjoyed in the first half,
though they remained a dangerous prospect on the counter.
However, there were no further goals at either end of the field as
Pirates ran out 3-1 winners to suggest that 2018 may be a more
encouraging year for the ‘Happy People’.