Bay United knock out Downs
Posted: 25 October 2008 Time: 22:10
Bay United provided arguably the biggest shock in the history of the Telkom Knockout when they defeated Mamelodi Sundowns 1-0 at the Super Stadium on Saturday evening.
On a rainy evening in Atteridgeville, the rookies from the Eastern Cape weathered both the physical and metaphorical storm, provided by the elements and the desperate hosts respectively, to join Golden Arrows, Ajax Cape Town, SuperSport United, Bloemfontein Celtic and Free State Stars in the quarterfinals of the competition.
An early free-kick from Gareth Ncaca was enough to separate the sides on the night, though the Brazilians will look back on a number of missed chances and fine saves from Bay goalkeeper Arthur Bartman and know that they should never have lost this match.
After their midweek destruction of AmaZulu in a League game, it seemed as if Trott Moloto's side had got back into their stride. However, this result puts further pressure on the club's technical team, whose future in now surely in doubt.
For United, on the other hand, it is further proof that they have what it takes to live with the biggest clubs in the country, having beaten Orlando Pirates in a League match just last month.
Sundowns had the ball in the back of the net as early as the second minute, but Dario Monteiro's glancing header into the bottom corner of Bay's net was scratched off due to the striker being offside.
If the ease with which Sundowns opened up Bay's defence to create the chance for Monteiro was troubling for the newly-promoted team, then they certainly didn't show it. In fact, the visitors took a shock lead in the 13th minute thanks to some rather patchy goalkeeping from Brian Baloyi.
The veteran goalminder allowed Ncaca's free kick, taken from an acute angle, to beat him at his near post, this despite Baloyi easily moving across to his right and getting both hands to the effort.
The slippery conditions would have made life more difficult for the 'keeper, but for a man of his experience and ability it was a poor error.
The Brazilians almost came up with an immediate reply, Monteiro getting on the end of Dillon Sheppard's free kick, but Bartman made a fine reaction save.
Midway through the first half, Lerato Chabangu did well initially to win an aerial challenge at the back post, but the ball didn't drop kindly for him and he volleyed over from close range under pressure from Bartman.
Monteiro's aerial threat came to the fore again in the 26th minute, as the Mozambican got on the end of Chabangu's cross but put his header wide. Less than 30 seconds later it was Katlego Mphela's turn to miss a great scoring opportunity, shooting wide after Josta Dladla had done well to set him up with a clever knock-down.
While Sundowns were guilty of missing chances in this period, credit had to be given to Bartman for a terrific save in the 37th minute, stretching across to his right to keep out Monteiro's imaginative overhead kick that would have been a contender for goal of the tournament had it gone in.
Just before half time Bay came close to extending their lead, as Ncaca's corner kick was flicked just over the crossbar by Macdonald Mukansi, but the side from the Eastern Cape would still have been proud of their efforts in the first 45 minutes, going into the break with a 1-0 lead.
Five minutes into the second half Bay needed Bartman to come off his line and dive bravely at the feet of Mphela, and the goalkeeper took a nasty kick to the head for his troubles. Fortunately he was able to continue and completed the match.
On 70 minutes Monteiro and Bartman continued their personal duel, and again it was the goalkeeper who came out on top, palming away the attacker's long range snap shot.
By this stage 'Downs had called on the impressive depth on their bench, throwing on Benedict Vilakazi, Collins Mbesuma and Koketso Mmotong, but they still struggled to break down the resilient Bay United backline, marshalled by skipper Duran Francis.
In fact, 'Downs were lucky to see Jimmy Zakazaka's clever finish in the 83rd minute scratched off for a marginal offside call, and they simply could not muster a reply in the remaining time.
Report courtesy of Backpage