Stars send Chiefs crashing out of Cup
Posted: 14 April 2012 Time: 22:14
Kaizer Chiefs' post Vladimir Vermezovic era began in defeat on Saturday night as they were dumped out of the Nedbank Cup by Free State Stars at the Peter Mokaba Stadium.
Ea Lla Koto, who claimed the scalp of Orlando Pirates in the previous round, put paid to the hopes of another Soweto giant with a 1-0 win thanks to Dove Wome’s second half header and move into the semifinals.
After a quiet start the first chance arrived on 25 minutes, as Chiefs midfielder Willard Katsande pushed forward into the penalty area and got away a low shot that forced Stars goalkeeper Kennedy Mweene into a comfortable save low to his left.
Five minutes later it was Ea Lla Koto’s turn to threaten in attack, as a snap shot from striker Edward Manqele deflected off Jimmy Jambo toward the bottom corner of the net, but Arthur Bartman did well to turn the ball away for a corner kick.
Ten minutes before the interval Mweene was called into action, making a good reaction stop to keep out a Sthembiso Ngcobo header after the lanky striker had beaten his marker to Jimmy Tau’s teasing cross from the right flank.
In the 42nd minute Stars defender Ayanda Gcaba had probably the best chance of the half, getting a free header from Mpho Makola’s fine cross, but he only succeeded in putting his effort high over the target.
Seven minutes after the break Ngcobo should have put Chiefs ahead, running onto a pass from Siphiwe Tshabalala to be faced with only Mweene to beat, but the striker was unable to beat his former Stars teammate.
A short while later the hosts were unjustly denied a penalty: Ngcobo was fouled just inside the 18-yard area but referee Charl Theron inexplicably awarded a free kick to Chiefs just outside the box. Tshabalala very nearly scored from the set piece, sending a shot just over the crossbar, but he should have been going for goal from the spot.
Just before the hour mark Mzikayise Mashaba skinned Tau to be faced with a sight of goal, albeit from a tight angle, and he forced Bartman into an excellent save with his legs. Just a minute later Stars finally broke the deadlock, with Dove Wome getting onto the end of a fine cross from Gcaba to head home from close range.
The Amakhosi struggled to create chances to bring themselves level, though on 76 minutes Tshabalala latched onto a loose ball in the Stars penalty area and lashed a fierce shot just wide of goal – Mweene wouldn’t have had a chance if the shot was on target.
Chiefs: Bartman; Tau (Motaung Jnr 83’), Zvasiya, Mashamaite, Jambo, Nale (Dladla 63’), Katsande (Yende 75’), Nengomasha, Tshabalala, Majoro, Ngcobo
Stars: Mweene; Makola, Sadate, Mhamha, Gcaba, Mashaba, Wiltwer, Masehe, Mashego, Wome (Coetzee 74’), Manqele (Sekgobela 90+2’)