Celtic and Sundowns end goalless
Posted: 3 February 2010 Time: 21:28
Mabhuti Khenyeza cost Mamelodi Sundowns three points as they drew 0-0 with Bloemfontein Celtic at the Super Stadium, getting himself sent off for attempting to hit a Lebohang Mokoena cross with his hand after he had already been previously cautioned.
That sending off was crucial as it meant that Sundowns, who were very much on the attack, lacked the extra body up front that could have helped them turn one of their many opportunities home. The game ended goalless.
Celtic, though, were unfortunate not to have won the game as they were on the end of some incorrect refereeing decisions, most notably when they should have been awarded what was a legitimate goal on 77 minutes after Thembile Kanono’s shot rifled onto the Sundowns crossbar and bounced down over the line. However, the goal was not awarded.
Sundowns got an early scare when Celtic winger Tlou Segolela used his speed to get away from their defence and squared the ball towards team mate Excellent Walaza, who could not get to the ball but neither did Sundowns keeper Brian Baloyi.
The Sundowns keeper had to track to the back post where Cecil Oerson came sliding in; he managed to get a touch to the ball but hit it into the side netting.
Three minutes after that Celtic defender Matoho made a hash of what should have been a regulation clearance on the edge of his own 18-yard area. The ball fell to Katlego Mphela, who moved the ball forward and fired towards goal.
Somehow, and miraculously so, Celtic keeper Patrick Tignyemb managed to get a hand to the ball and punched it up into the air. As the ball fell back into play, Khenyeza got to the ball ahead of Goldstone and blasted the ball at the keeper, who blocked it with his legs.
Five minutes before half time Sundowns were dealt a major blow when Khenyeza, who had earlier picked up a yellow card, attempted to hit Mokoena’s cross from the right with his hand. Referee Charl Theron reached for his top pocket and flashed a red card at Khenyeza, who put his team under unnecessary pressure by getting a needless second yellow card.
Sundowns were not playing like they were a man down and constantly troubled the Celtic defence. Twenty minutes from the end Esrom Nyandoro sent the ball from the right to Mphela, who did brilliantly well to bring the ball under control before pushing past Matoho and it took a brave Tignyemb to come out and stop the ball at the feet of the striker.
Celtic had a goal by Oerson disallowed in the 75th minute as Walaza was judged to be in an off side position. That seemed to spur them on into and in the 77th minute substitute Kanono struck the ball from 20 yards out over Baloyi and it hit the underside of the wood work and bounced behind the line, but the referee did not award the goal.