Chiefs and Stars draw

The Amakhosi began the game in a bright way and created some good chances early on but over all they found it hard to break down a Stars team who held their shape and put up a good defensive display, especially in the latter stages of the game.

Chiefs had the game’s first chance when a long ball from Thomas Sweswe was flicked backwards by Sthembiso Ngcobo and it fell into the path of Knowledge Musona, who sped past Mbulelo Mabizela and unleashed a powerful shot which was blocked by Stars keeper Mpontshane. Ngcobo attacked the rebound but his close range header went over the goal.

Stars were able to hold firm against an early Chiefs onslaught and as a result managed to claw their way back into the game. Thuso Phala sent a free kick in the 21st minute from the right wing to the far post where Derrick Spencer connected with the ball and headed it across the face of goal. It took a desperate clearance by Sweswe to get the ball away.

Reneilwe Letsholonyane put Mandla Masango free on the right with a quick pass to him but he wasted the opportunity by sending his cross straight to Mpontshane – that was on 22 minutes. Sixty seconds later Letsholonyane was again influential as he played a through ball to Ngcobo, who tried to drill the ball towards goal but Stars defender Reuben Thebakeng bravely slid in to block the ball.

The visitors were by no means over awed and in the 26th minute attacked Chiefs down the right with gusto. Terrence Mandaza was able to connect with Phelelani Mpangase’s cross from the right but Itumeleng Khune was able to cover his near post and blocked the ball.

Stars finished the half stronger, with Mandaza making himself a nuisance. Chiefs needed striker Musona to come to their rescue as he headed Mandaza’s header off the line just before half-time.

Stars opted to change tact in the second half and looked as though they were content to play out for a draw; Chiefs were being awarded a number of free-kicks around the Stars penalty area but unable to take advantage.

After Letsholonyane was brought down in the 74th minute, Yende floated a free kick into the Stars danger zone and although Dominic Isaacs got on the end of it, his down header lacked any power to really test Mpontshane.

Musona was unable to direct his 75th effort minute on target as he climbed up to meet Dladla’s corner which was swung in from the left. Musona, though, would come the closest to breaking the dead lock in the second-half.

In the 82nd minute Letsholonyane was again brought down in a dangerous position on the edge of the Stars 18-yard area by Henrico Botes. Musona curled the ball around the wall but the ball hit the bottom of Mpontshane’s left hand upright and went out for a goal kick.

With neither team able to find the spark in the second-half, the game finished goalless.