PSL match report: Free State Stars beat Polokwane City
Posted: 9 November 2013 Time: 15:15
Free State Stars earned a valuable 1-0 victory over fellow strugglers Polokwane City in a Premiership match at Goble Park on Saturday afternoon.
Mthokozisi Yende got the goal for Ea Lla Koto on 80 minutes, although Vukile Mngqibisa may be credited with an own-goal on review.
Reuben Thebakang and Abdul Basit Adam returned to the starting line-up for Stars, while Mongezi Bobe and Bokang Thlone had to make do with a place on the bench.
Meanwhile, Boebie Solomons included Sifiso Mbhele, Maxwell Molala and Mothusi Gopane in his starting XI for Polokwane.
Both sides were well aware that victory would prevent them from slipping into the relegation zone this weekend, while a draw would give Golden Arrows an opportunity to leapfrog both sides, if they take the points against SuperSport United.
Free State Stars started the brighter of the two sides, creating a couple of opportunities through Adam and Danny Venter in the opening minutes, but City goalkeeper Modiri Marumo was up to the task.
Ea Lla Koto dominated the first stanza, but Rise and Shine showed glimpses of promise, with Mothusi Gopane looking dangerous on the counter-attack.
Polokwane created the first chance of the second half, when Puleng Tlolane made a run through the Stars defence before laying the ball off to Galabgwe Moyana, whose resulting turn and shot narrowly missed the target.
Second half substitute Esau Kanyenda should have given the visitors the lead just after the hour mark, when Moyana picked him out in the area with a pin-point pass, but he was unable to find the target with only Daniel Agyei to beat.
Ea Lla Koto took the lead 10 minutes from time, when Anver Esterhuizen left a couple of defenders in his wake before setting up Mthokozisi Yende, whose shot took a deflection of Mngqibisa before ending up in the back of the net.
City piled forward in the final few minutes in search of the equaliser but Agyei kept them at bay to secure the three points.
The win moves Stars up to ninth on the log, while Rise and Shine slip to 14th.