Orlando Pirates and Maritzburg United PSL
Posted: 2 December 2014 Time: 18:30
With just a few games to go before the Soweto Derby, the pressure increased on Orlando Pirates following a 2-1 Absa Premiership defeat to Maritzburg United at Soccer City.
A brace from Mohammed Anas did the job for Steve Komphela’s men, with Kermit Erasmus getting the goal for the Buccaneers.
Needing a win to build some much-needed momentum ahead of the clash against Kaizer Chiefs, the hosts got off to the worst possible start, with Anas firing in from close range in the second minute.
Thokozani Sekotlong lost his marker before teeing up the Ghanaian, who finished from point-blank range to stun the few who gathered at the 2010 World Cup Final venue.
Robyn Johannes headed straight at Brighton Mhlongo before Thabo Matlaba fired wide from a good position, but Pirates got their equaliser in the 33rd minute following a sustained spell of pressure. Matlaba broke forward before finding Erasmus, who fired past an unmoved Virgil Vries from the edge of the area.
Matlaba’s good work though, was undone on the cusp of half-time. The fullback failed to clear his lines and let in Mondli Cele, who in turn picked out Anas, who beat Brighton Mhlongo for the second time.
Maritzburg continued to press forward after the break and Sekotlong should’ve doubled the hosts lead in the 70th minute. Having beaten Mhlongo to the ball, the former AmaTuks striker looked sure to score, but he could only manage to head his effort over the crossbar.
Mhlongo also pulled off one of the saves of the season, denying Mondli Cele with a low one-handed save.
Pirates pushed forward in the dying embers of the encounter, but Maritzburg ultimately saw out the game with relative ease, with the hosts only managing a single shot on target in the second half.
HOME: Orlando Pirates
Coach: Vladimir Vermezovic
Formation: four two three one
AWAY: Maritzburg United
Coach: Steve Komphela
Formation: four three three