Arrows stumble at Bloem Celtic


Golden Arrows and Bloemfontein Celtic could not be separated as the side played to a 1-1 draw in DStv Premiership action at Sugar Ray Xulu Stadium on Sunday.

Arrows coach Mandla Ncikazi made two changes with Knox Mutizwa and Lindokuhle Mtshali coming into the starting side. Meanwhile, Celtic persisted with the line-up that secured them victory over TS Galaxy last weekend.

Arrows started very strongly with a lot of possession and good passing. Celtic won the first corner of the match. Menzi Masuku delivered a good ball to the back post but Victor Letsoalo headed wide from an awkward angle.

With 22 minutes gone, Pule Mmodi cut inside on the left and curled a cross into the box for Arrows but Ndwandwe could only steer his header wide of goal.

Phunya Sele Sele took the lead in the 34th minute. Nkosinathi Sibisi left Mzwanele Mahashe unmarked at the back post and the Celtic centre-back headed the ball down and it deflected off Letsoalo and sneaked in at the near post from a tight angle.

Mtshali then backheeled the ball cleverly into the path of Velemseni Ndwandwe in the 38th minute but his effort was well saved in the bottom left-hand corner by Celtic shot-stopper Jackson Mabokgwane.

Soon after, Ndwandwe turned provider when he floated the ball over the top of the Celtic defence to release Mutizwa, whose header looped over an onrushing Jackson Mabokgwane and onto the top of the crossbar and behind.

Arrows equalised in the 72nd minute. Sabelo delivered from the left and his cross took a looping deflection over Mabokgwane with the ball rebounding back off the bar to Mutizwa, who had a simple header into an empty net.

Ntsako Makhubela was shown a second yellow card as Arrows were reduced to ten men in the 86th minute but John Maduka's side were not able to capitalise on their numerical advantage as the sides settled for a share of the spoils.

Confirmed line-ups:

Arrows: Mlungwana, Sibisi, Lunga, Zuke, M.Dube, Parusnath, Ndwandwe, Makhubela, Mtshali, Mutizwa, Mmodi.

Subs: Gumede, Phiri, Nkombelo, Conco, Shitolo, Mathiane, L.Dube, Ndlovu, Sabelo.

Celtic: Mabokgwane, Baloyi, Ngobeni, Rikhotso, Mahashe, Mabena, Kobedi, Maema, Masuku, Letsoala, Matjila

Subs: Chaine, Potsane, Mereko, Lingwati, Tchilimbou, Ncobeni, van der Ross, Mashikinya, Sera