Santos, Pirates draw
Posted: 7 February 2009 Time: 17:46
Orlando Pirates were frustrated in their attempts to move up to the PSL log when they played out to a 0-0 draw with Santos at the Athlone Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Pirates played most of the second half with 10-men after Katlego Mashego was red-carded for a dangerous tackle in the 58th minute.
The Johannesburg side could well have been looking at all three points had they taken one or two of the good opportunities they created.
For their part, it was a battling and determined display by the home side, who also had a couple of half chances, but would probably have been satisfied with the point earned.
Santos made a bright start to the game when Graham King’s persistence in the box earned him a snap-shot at goal after 20 seconds, but Pirates soon took control of the game and created the best chances of the first half.
Defender Lucky Lekgwathi enjoyed a golden opportunity in the sixth minute, but with the goal at his mercy, he failed to find the target following a Josephy Kamwendo corner.
In the 11th minute a great run by Katlego Mashego resulted in him trying to set up Siphelele Mthembu at the back post, but great last-ditch tackle by Mogogi Gabonamong saw a certain goal averted.
The Sea Robbers remained in charge and Mthembu was soon in the action as he burst into the box to latch onto a loose ball, but Santos keeper Francis Chansa did well to make a block.
Having weathered the storm without conceding a goal, David Bright’s side started to get back into the game and in the 25th minute Eleazar Rodgers found himself one-on-one with Moeneeb Josephs, but was unable to keep his parting shot down.
King was a constant threat to Pirates, in particular giving right back Rooi Mahamutsa a torrid time and in the 25th minute he whipped in a great cross which was well-intercepted by Innocent Mdledle, under pressure from Romano Scott.
Five minutes before the break King was at it again when he picked out Ryan Chapman inside the box, but the latter headed off target.
The People’s Team came out firing on all cylinders in the second half and in the 51st minute Rodgers forced a good save out of Josephs with a header from King’s corner, who in turn, shot just wide of goal a minute later.
The complexion of the game was changed in the 58th minute when Mashego was red-carded for what can only be described as a cynical challenge of Scott.
This did not however have too much affect on the game as Pirates continued to have their fair share of possession.
But with both sides visibly tiring on a scorching afternoon, there were very few further chances in the game as the action on the field sizzled out somewhat.
While there was a bit of late pressure applied by Pirates, Santos did not have too many problems in holding on for a well-earned point.