Knox Mutizwa shoots Arrows to victory in Durban derby
DURBAN - Knox Mutizwa earned himself hero status in the KwaZulu-Natal derby as he netted the brace that steered Lamontville Golden Arrows to victory and closer to safety at the expense of their city rivals, AmaZulu at Jonsson Kings Park Stadium on Saturday night.
The Zimbabwean netted a second-half brace to steer Abafana Bes'thende to glory. Arrows are now seventh on the log, while Usuthu are hovering near the foot of the table in 15th place.
Arrows started the game on a front foot. They were looking to use the width of the pitch to penetrate Usuthu. Coach Steve Komphela employed a 3-5-2 system with wing backs (Siyabonga Dube and Divine Lunga) overlapping from both flanks.
The plan was clear, as the wide players were instructed to float more crosses into the box.
Usuthu were playing more of a 4-3-3 when they were in possession, but reverted back in to a 4-4-2 when they even defending.
But both goalkeepers Sifiso Mlungwana and Siyabonga Mbatha were on honeymoon in the first 30 minutes of the game, as t hey were not really tested.
Abafana Bes'thende were compelled to make a first substitution in the 40th minute after Michael Gumede sustained an injury which forced him from the field. Lerato Lamola made way for Gumede.
No team managed to register any shot in target in the first half, but the action began to heat up in the second half.
Ironically, it was Arrows who took the lead despite Usuthu dominating the proceedings in the second half. Samuel Darpoh fouled Lamola inside the box and Mutizwa stepped up to convert the penalty for Abafana Bes'thende.
Jozef Vukusic made a double substitution after going behind. They sacrificed Chawapiwa and Maduna. He introduced Sibusiso Magaqa and Siphelele Magubane in their places.
Siyethemba Sithebe restored parity for Usuthu in the 80th minute. Abafana Bes'thende failed to clear a ball that was floated in to the box by Darpoh.
Mutizwa, though, completed his brace in the 89th minute. It was a well orchestrated move instigated by the man himself. He spotted a telling run made by Dube on the right and side. Dube played a cut back in to the path of Lindokuhle Mtshali who laid the ball on to Mutizwa, who finished with aplomb to steer his side to victory.