Manzini earns Celtic late win
A late goal in injury time from Lerato Manzini handed Bloemfontein Celtic a 1-0 win over AmaZulu in Absa Premiership match at the Free State Stadium on Sunday afternoon ended 0-0.
It was a slow start from the home side as they struggled to get into the game and only had the first real attempt on goal in the 26th minute.
AmaZulu, on the other hand, started in rather confident fashion and controlled the early stages of the match.
Only the brilliance of Patrick Tignyemb kept the Phunya Sele Sele on level terms 11 minutes into the match as AmaZulu’s Marc Van Heerden brought the best out of him from a 25-yard free-kick.
Van Heerden curled the set-piece around the defensive wall and towards the top right-hand corner, but Tignyemb was on hand, diving full stretch to his left to make a fingertip save.
Two minutes later and Tignyemb should have seen red, but luckily for Celtic the referee made the wrong decision.
Sifiso Vilakazi was through on goal and just had the keeper to beat, but as the AmaZulu striker rounded the keeper, Tignyemb appeared to pull him down. The referee, though, waved away the penalty appeals and instead showed Vilakazi a yellow card for diving.
As the half progressed Celtic started to find their footing and they began taking control of the match.
In the 26th minute some slick work by Ruzaigh Gamildien on the right flank saw the Celtic man cut inside the box and let fly with a low powerful shot, but Philani was up to the challenge making a good save down low to his left.
Gamildien was in the thick of the action again three minutes before the break when an over hit right wing cross was nodded back into the danger area, but the Celtic man fired over from 12-yards out, taking the game into the break with the sides all square.
The second half continued in the same manner as Celtic went in search of the opener and Bacela should have given the home side the lead in the 66th minute.
After some good build-up play Celtic worked Bacela into space inside the 18-yard box, but he wasted the opportunity, firing the ball wide from close range.
Four minutes later and Gamildien had a chance to break the deadlock as well, but he headed a chance over the crossbar from 12-yards out.
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Following that the second half really filtered out a little as the match looked to be heading to a goalless stalemate.
That was until second half substitute Lerato Manzini found the winner in the 92nd minute with a clinical finish from 14-yard out to hand the home side all three points, 1-0.
Bloemfontein Celtic (0) 1 (Manzini 92’)
AmaZulu (0) 0
Bloemfontein Celtic: Tignyemb; Mzava, Isaacs, Nthethe, Mahoa, Nyanda, Madubanya (Motshegwa 64’), Arwuah, Mogorosi (Lakay 53’), Bacela (Mazini 70’), Gamildien
AmaZulu: Zikalala; Mokoro, Teyise, Cele, Van Heerden, Vialne, Khumalo (Senamela 72’), Kgatla, Hlela (Tshabangu 55’), Dlamini, Vilakazi (Dlamini 62’)