Phunya Sele Sele move out of the danger zone and jump to 14th place on 30 points, one point ahead of Thanda Royal Zulu. The result also confirms that Bay United will certainly finish bottom of the log, and they have officially been relegated with two rounds of the 2008/09 League season still to be played.
Owen Da Gama’s team came into the game knowing that they could move clear of the danger zone if they defeated Stars, and got off to the perfect start when Moses Spandeel drove a low shot past Wayne Sandilands in the Tycoons’ goal to put Celtic 1-0 up in the 12th minute.
Their task was made easier on the half-hour mark when Stars striker Luis Renteria picked up his second yellow card and was dismissed from the field, leaving the visitors to play with a numerical disadvantage for an hour of the game.
Celtic were struck a blow just before half-time when goalscorer Spandeel picked up an injury and had to be replaced. Gert Schalkwyk came on as a substitute to link up with fellow forward Tlou Segolela.
Celtic dominated play but they did find it difficult to break down Stars’ resilient defence, and Stars’ goalkeeper Sandilands produced a few good saves to ensure his team were always in with a chance of snatching something at the other end.
But Celtic plugged away and were eventually rewarded late on when Patrick Malokase added the second to ensure the Bloemfontein side had secured all three precious points.
Even a late red card for Wellington Sambu that saw both teams end with 10 men wasn’t enough to overshadow a good day for Celtic, who will now have high hopes of maintaining their top-flight status.