Honours even for United and Chiefs
Honours even for United and Chiefs

Posted in News on Mar 30, 2002.

Kaizer Chiefs did considerable damage to Supersport United's title aspirations after holding the second-placed side to a 1-1 draw at Mmabatho Stadium on Sunday in a tempestuous PSL clash.

Referee Achmet Salie brandished no less than seven yellow cards while Arthur Zwane foolishly got himself sent off right at the death.

It was level pegging at the interval courtesy of two sublime strikes by Phillip Evans for Supersport and Jabu Pule for Chiefs as the two sides defensively cancelled out each other in the second half and failed to alter

the scoreline.

Chiefs, out to avenge their home defeat by United in the return fixture, relegated Pule to the bench after his exploits for the national team, while another Bafana international Cyril Nzama walked straight back into the side on arrival from Gaberone. Rowan Fernandez got the nod in Chiefs goals ahead of regular captain Brian Baloyi and paid his coach's faith in him with a string of fine saves.

But the talismanic Pule would enter the fray a quarter of an hour into the match and go on to prove his worth to Amakhosi.

The match got off to a frenetic pace with robust tackles flying all over the turf as was to be expected in a clash featuring two teams that had scored nine goals between them in their previous matches with United having humbled

Sundowns 4-1 and Chiefs annihilating Swallows 5-1.

As early as the first minute, Seuntjwie Mothlanjwa latched on to a long punt forward, waltzed past Patrick Mabedi and Nzama before forcing a decent save from Fernandez as United signaled their attacking intentions from the first


Then as Chiefs looked to take the game to their opponents, Johannes Mine got the dubious distinction of becoming the first player into the referee's book for a blatant tug on Justice Sithole's jersey in the fourth minute.

But not even a bit of touchline cheerleading by Chiefs PRO Putco Mafani could stop United from taking the lead in the eighth minute as Evans opened his Supersport United and professional account with a spectacular strike.

Zambian international, Emmanuel Zulu swung in a left-footed flag-kick from the right and Evans met the ball first time on the volley with his left foot, burying his effort beyond Ferndandez as the Chiefs defence was caught


Ertugral's response to the set-back was to make a tactical switch, replacing Josias Macamo with Pule in the fifteenth minute in an effort to add some creativity to a hitherto flat Chiefs midfield.

Then a minute later Chiefs thought they had a penalty when Johnson clattered into Justice Sithole just inside the box.

Referee Salie pointed to the spot, but after he was mobbed by menacing United players, who felt the challenge was innocuous, and after consulting with his assistant on the right side of touchline, amended the decision to a free-kick just outside the box, while Johnson got away with a yellow card.

Pule missed a glorious opportunity to make an immediate impact half way through the first half after having been put through by Zwane. United captain Themba Mnguni did well to put off the Amakhosi midfielder at the crucial moment.

As the clash went off the boil towards the end of the half, United lethargic and predictable, mainly initiated on the right flank with very little happening on the left side of the pitch.

Thabo Mooki then forced Johnson to gather on the second attempt with a long range grounder five minutes to the break.

Then on the stroke of half-time, Pule crafted a truly sublime moment to bring Chiefs level after.

Sithole set the Bafana midfielder up with a neat lay-off, and as the United defence backpedaled the pint-sized Pule let fly a cracker from way outside the box , beating Johnson hands down.

Chiefs were giving the walking wounded United defence a torrid time at the start of the second half. Both Kaitano Tembo and captain Mnguni were playing with heavily strapped thighs as Pitso Mosimane was forced introduce veteran

midfielder John Moeti for Thomas Madigage who limped off with a twisted ankle.

Jukulile went narrowly close again in the 65th minute after Pule had left Mine for dead on the left before fashioning a neat cross. But the Zimbabwean forward flashed his header just wide.

Moments later, Fernandez bailed out Chiefs twice in as many minutes after successive defensive blunders.

First, Marco Mthembu miscued his clearance and almost gifted Evans an opportunity, but Fernandez reacted quicker and only just managed to beat the United defender to the loose ball.

Then Malawian international Mabedi lost the ball and Raselemane went on a run on the left before sending a tantalizing low cross that a desperately lunging Mabedi almost steered into his own net but for the agility of

Fernandez, who dived back just in the nick of time to stop the ball from crossing the line.

As action swung to the other end Johnson pulled another save from the top drawer in the 70th minute, denying Pule after the Chiefs midfielder had been superbly teed up Sithole.

As the match drew to a close, Zwane got himself sent off. First, the Chiefs winger lunged at Rufus Mokoti in frustration and in the ensuing madness, Zwane struck Peter Khoabane in the face sending the defender down writhing

in pain, and leaving the referee no choice but to send him off.


Supersport United: Johnson, Evans, Mokoti, Mnguni, Mokoti, Mine, Mothlanjwa, Madigage (Moeti, 55), Khoabane, Zulu (Masina, 68), Raselemane.

Kaizer Chiefs: Fernandez, Nzama, Goldstone, Mabedi, Mthembu, Mooki, Zwane, Fredericks, Macamo (Pule, 15), Sithole (Kannemeyer, 71), Jukulile (Maselesele, 78).

Referee: Achmet Salie

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