|TEAM LINE UP|
Dlamini (J Zwane 59′)
Chabalala (Ritson 55′)
Ngwenya (Ngxabi 82′)
AMAZULU FC 2
0 GOLDEN ARROWS
Competition: Absa Premiership
Date: Sunday, 10 December 2008
Venue: King Zwelithini Stadium
Lightning struck twice on Wednesday evening at the King Zwelithini Stadium on a rainy, thundering night in Durban. Collins Chabalala scored a brace in a matter of three minutes to guide AmaZulu to a 2-0 win over Golden Arrows, condemning Manquoba Mngqithi’s side to their third league defeat in a row.
In an action packed first half Arrows dominated early proceedings as they controlled the lion’s share of possession.
Their first chance of the game came in the seventh minute when a wayward shot from Richard Henyekane deflected into the path of Njabulo Manqana who proceeded to try and chip the keeper from 16 yards out, but the ball floated just wide of the left-hand up-right.
Two minutes later and the October/November Player of the Month, Henyekane, pulled the best out of the Usuthu keeper, Kakonje Kalililo, when he shot from 20 yards out. Kalililo had to dive full length to his left to tip the ball around the post for a corner-kick.
Abafana Bes’thende continued to dictate play, but for a period of about ten minutes they seemed to go to sleep at the back when lighting struck twice in a matter of minutes in the form of Chabalala.
In a quick break away by AmaZulu a good through ball found Nhlanhla Zwane through on goal and one-on-one with the Arrows Keeper. Helton Da Rocha did brilliantly initially to thwart Zwane but Chabalala pounced on the rebound and buried the ball into the back of the net in the 17th minute, 1-0.
Then only three minutes later and Usuthu doubled their lead. AmaZulu took a short corner on the right side of the field before delivering the ball to the back post where they found Chabalala unmarked. The big animal of a man made no mistake in grabbing his brace and doubling his ides lead when he headed the ball home powerfully from six yards out, 2-0.
Chabalala nearly grabbed his hat-trick in the 22nd minute when Dumisani Ngwenya broke down the left flank and delivered a telling ball into the box to, once again, find Chabalala unmarked but fortunately for Arrows his header went just inches wide of the post.
Arrows regrouped in the following minutes and further increased their possession stakes. However, they looked weary at the back whenever AmaZulu attacked and they looked like they couldn’t handle the strength or height of Chabalala.
Abia Nale found himself in the perfect place to pull one back for his side in the 31st minute when an in-swinging corner found him unmarked at the back post only a couple of yards out, but his woeful header went over the cross-bar when he should have scored.
Usuthu went into the half time break two nil up and Arrows went into the locker-room stunned.
The second half quickly settled into a pattern of Arrows on full out attack while AmaZulu sat back in defence and tried to hit on the counter-attack.
Despite all their possession and control in the midfield Abafana Bes’thende failed to create any clear cut opportunities in front of goal. In fact their only decent chance of the second half fell to Nale in the 51st minute. A quick passing movement found Nale unmarked 16 yards out from goal but again his finishing was poor as his shot went the wrong side of the up-right.
Arrows could consider themselves lucky as Chabalala was substituted early on in the second half due to injury or the final result could have been worse for Mngqithi’s side.
Clive Barker’s men picked up the three points and moved to sixth on the Absa Premiership log while Arrows suffered their third successive league defeat.
Amazulu (2) 2 (Chabalala 17′, 20′)
Golden Arrows 0
|TEAM LINE UP|
Mvalo (Musonda 52′)
Nale (Mshengu 67′)
Vilakazi (Da Silva 52′)