FILE - Baroka FC goalkeeper Elvis Chipezeze. Photo: Deryck Foster/BackpagePix

POLOKWANE – Baroka FC and Bloemfontein Celtic played to a 0-0 draw in a Premiership clash played at the Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane on Sunday afternoon.

There wasn’t all that much to enthuse over in a scrappy encounter, especially with Celtic having to play the final half-hour a man down after Lantshene Phalane was red-carded.

In a tight, tense encounter, both teams remained compact and difficult to break down. Both defences were well organised and, as a result, opportunities were hard to come by in the opening 45 minutes.

For visitors Celtic, Ronald Pfumbidzai flashed a harmless header at goal and Menzi Masuku was particularly prominent in attack.

Phalane also had a shot at goal for the Bloemfontein side, but he failed to trouble Baroka goalkeeper Elvis Chipezeze.

At the other end, for the home team Baroka, Richard Mbulu drilled an effort wide of goal.

Baroka then made an early change when Orebotse Mongae replaced Sbonelo Ngubane in the 33rd minute.

Celtic finished the first half strong, with Pfumbidzai shooting wide and Siphelele Luthuli’s on-target left-footer saved by Chipezeze.

Baroka kicked off the second half with greater purpose and urgency, and created an opening for Manuel Kambala, but the midfielder hoofed his attempt over the bar.

In the 64th minute, Celtic had a setback when they were reduced to 10-men after Phalane was sent off for a second bookable offence.

Baroka responded by beefing up their attacking in bringing on Isaac Selemela in place of Leonard Tisdell.

Gerald Phiri Junior had a great chance to win it for Baroka, but could only manage to steer his shot wide of the target.

Celtic then also went to their bench as they looked to make sure of the point, with Sera Motebang replacing Ndumiso Mabena.

But goalless was how it ended in a match with lots of endeavour but little in the way of inspiration.

African News Agency (ANA)