Kaizer Chiefs (1 ) 1 (45. Buchanan o.g. 20’)
AmaZulu (0) 1. (7. Ntuli 77’)
A ten-man Kaizer Chiefs played to a 1-1 draw in their DStv Premiership clash against AmaZulu at the FNB Stadium on Wednesday evening.
Amakhosi took the lead after Keagan Buchanan turned a Keagan Dolly cross in the 20th minute into his own net.
AmaZulu found the equalizer, though, through substitute Bonginkosi Ntuli in the 77th minute at a time when Chiefs were down to ten men after Cole Alexander was sent off for Chiefs on the hour mark.
AmaZulu themselves had a player sent off in the final five minutes of the game when Samkelo Mgwazela received a second yellow card, as the teams shared the spoils.
The game’s first chance came when Cole Alexander went for a spectacular overhead kick in the fourth minute, as he attacked a beautifully weighted cross from Njabulo Blom, but his attempt lacked any direction and went way wide of the AmaZulu goal.
The visitors’ first sight of goal came in the 15th minute when a wayward pass from Blom fell to Sphesihle Maduna, who went for goal from 35 yards out. His effort flew past Daniel Akpeyi, but went past the right hand upright of the Chiefs keeper.
Akpeyi managed to cover his near post two minutes later, as he closed down the angle for Luvuyo Memela and stopped his shot from the right.
After managing some AmaZulu pressure, Chiefs launched an attack down the right with another superb ground ball from Blom finding Keagan Dolly, who sped upfield and cut the ball across the goal looking to pick out Kgaogelo Sekgota.
Instead, the ball hit Buchanan, who was sliding in and trying to cut out the ball, but all he did was manage to roll the ball into his own goal, with his keeper Veli Mothwa off his line to collect the ball as Chiefs took the lead in the 20th minute.
Amakhosi were forced into making a substitution in the 25th minute, with Reeve Frosler suffering a concussion after an earlier clash of heads and being replaced by Ramahlwe Mphahlele.
The half ended with Alexander picking up a caution deep into referees’ optional time at the end of the half and after picking up his second booking of the match he will now miss Amakhosi’s next league game against Swallows FC.
Chiefs led at the break 1-0.
The first chance of the second half came five minutes in, with Siyethemba Sithebe finding himself with just Akpeyi to beat, but his close-range drive at goal lacked any power and was straight at the Chiefs keeper, who was able to make an easy save.
AmaZulu had another chance in the 56th minute, after Buchanan’s freekick was initially cleared by Chiefs, with the ball following to Thabo Qalinge on the right, who got into the Chiefs penalty area and went for power, driving his effort at goal well wide.
The visitors had Mothwa to thank for keeping the scoreline down, as he pushed out a leg to stop Dolly’s effort at goal from close on, after he had connected with Sekgota’s cross from the left.
Chiefs, though, went a man down on the hour mark when Alexander picked up his second yellow card for a foul on Qalinge.
AmaZulu were pushing for an equalizer and went close to finding it when Samkelo Mgwazela drove the ball beyond Akpeyi, but his well taken effort from a tight angle on the left was drilled into the Chiefs side netting.
They did find themselves level when Andre De Jong made some good movement down the right wing and laid the ball across for an onrushing Ntuli to drive the ball past Akpeyi on 77 minutes.
Shortly thereafter, De Jong was picked out with a long raking ball from the right which he made contact with, but this time Akpeyi managed to make a crucial stop on the goal line.
Numerical parity was restored five minutes from time when Mgwazela was given his second caution for a foul on Lebogang Manyama, with both teams seeing out the game a man light.
For Chiefs going a man down ultimately saw them chasing the game, which led to AmaZulu getting back into the game. The point, though, does see Chiefs climb into fifth place, as they have now gone three successive games without a loss.
It was a very physical game with seven cautions and two red cards, Chiefs will head into their next game against Swallows without Alexander and Blom, whose yellow card was his fourth of the season.
Fact of the Game – Stuart Baxter is the second Chiefs coach in the PSL era to go eight league games against a single opponent without losing. Muhsin Ertugral also went eight league games as Chiefs coach without a loss against Bloemfontein Celtic. Both their records read W6 D2.
Number of the game 20 – Stuart Baxter from his eight league clashes against AmaZulu as a Chiefs coach has won two points, the joint-most a Chiefs coach has won against a single opponent in the PSL era Muhsin Ertugral as Chiefs coach also won 20 points against Bloemfontein Celtic.
MVP – Sekgota proved to be a thorn in the side of AmaZulu and their only way to deal with him was with a number of wayward challenges, he felt the brunt of the visitors tackling. Dolly was sublime on the win again and Blom was strong on the flanks and his pace also troubled Benni McCarthy’s team.
What’s next – Chiefs are next in action on Sunday in the DStv Premiership against Swallows.
Chiefs: 43. D. Akpeyi, 39. R. Frosler (Mphahlele 25’), 27. Nj Ngcobo, 3. E. Mathoho, 4. D. Cardoso, 14. K. Sekgota, 45. N. Blom, 17. C. Alexander, 24. P. Nange ( Agay 66’), 25. B. Parker ( Manyama 80), 10. K. Dolly (Baccus 80’).
Subs Not used: 1. B. Petersen, 29. T. Dube, 12. Nk Ngcobo, 33. S. Radebe, 19. H. Mashiane.
Cautions: 2. R. Mphahlele 31’, 17. C. Alexander 45+2’, 10. K. Dolly 50’, 45. N. Blom 73’
Dismissal: 17. C. Alexander 59’
Coach: Stuart Baxter
AmaZulu: 44. Mothwa, 17. M. Gumede, 39. S. Mgwazela, 27. T. Xoki, 4. T. Malepe, 8. M. Makhaula, 45. K. Buchanan ( L. Memela 64’), 10. S. Sithebe (A. De Jong 74’), 15. T. Qalinge ( Majoro 81’), 34. S. Maduna (B. Ntuli 46’), 30. A. Mulenga ( Ekstein 74’).
Subs: 43. N. Boshoff, 22. S. Khumalo, 23. X. Mlambo, 5. T. Sikhakhane,
Cautions: 39. S. Mgwazela 51’, 7. B. Ntuli 85’, 28. H. Ekstein 90+1’
Dismissal: 39. S. Mgwazwela 85’
Coach: Benni McCarthy