Johannesburg – Lerato Chabangu came off the bench to snatch a late winner for Moroka Swallows in their 2-1 victory over Orlando Pirates in the Soweto derby at Orlando Stadium on Saturday.
Swallows opened the scoring in the eighth minute as Lantshene Phalane's shot at goal took a deflection off defender Siyabonga Sangweni and flat-footed goalkeeper Senzo Meyiwa. Pirates midfielder Oupa Manyisa levelled matters in the 34th minute from the penalty spot.
Pirates were left to regret their dismal showing in front of goal after a number of missed chances. Swallows midfielder Chabangu and Shere Lekgothoane both came on from the substitute's bench to combine for the winning goal in the 81st minute.
Early on, despite trailing, Pirates looked the better team with Mpho Makola, Kermit Erasmus and Thabo Matlaba spearheading the onslaught.
The nimble Makola troubled Luvhengo Mungomeni and Larry Cohen in the Swallows defence, and in the 26th minute Makola unleashed a powerful strike at the Swallows goal which was stopped only by the crossbar.
An Erasmus misfire on the half-hour mark, came after some neat tandem passing with Daine Klate on the edge of the penalty box, as Erasmus broke clear of the defence but shot inches wide with only the goalkeeper to beat.
Three minutes later, Erasmus redeemed himself by earning his team a penalty.
Swallows goalkeeper Greg Etafia miscued a kick which found Erasmus, who dribbled into the box and was fouled by Rudi Isaacs.
Swallows striker Siyabonga Nomvethe had a rare chance for his team but the veteran's lack of speed meant Happy Jele was able to win the ball as the sides went to the break locked at 1-1.
The bluntness of Pirates in front of goal was back to haunt them again as Makola missed another easy scoring opportunity in the 54th minute.
Klate and defender Rooi Mahamutsa hit the crossbar in two consecutive chances for the Buccaneers on the hour mark, which up until that point summed up their efficiency in front of goal.
The Dube Birds frustrated and exhausted the opposition as they managed to take the punches and keep the threat of conceding at bay.
On numerous occasions Pirates dissected the Swallows defensive formation but poor finishing proved their undoing. – Sapa