PORT ELIZABETH – Polokwane-based Baroka FC embarked on the long trek to Port Elizabeth and still managed to dispatch home side Chippa United 3-1 in an Absa Premiership fixture at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on Tuesday night.
Menzi Masuka got Chippa off to a quick start when he slipped a defender to have a pop at goal, but his attempt sailed wide of goal.
A few minutes later, with Chippa enjoying a period of dominance, Abel Mabaso felt confident enough to attempt a long-range shot, but it flew over the bar.
Masuku, though, continued to be a problem for the Baroka defence and when he created an opening for Mark Mayambela, the former Ajax Cape Town left-footer could only manage to hit his shot high.
Despite Chippa enjoying the lion’s share of possession, Baroka were always threatening on the counter.
On one such occasion, the Port Elizabeth team’s goalkeeper Brighton Mhlongo had to make a great save to deny the visitors.
Masuku missed another opportunity on the half-hour mark and, 10 minutes later, Chippa’s profligacy was punished when defender James Okwuosa put the ball into his own net to hand Baroka a surprise 1-0 lead.
Seven minutes into the second half, Chippa substituted Moeketesi Sekola and brought on Katlego Mashego.
Just short of the hour mark, the PE club was awarded a penalty and it was the substitute Mashego who converted the spot-kick to level the score at 1-1.
Again, even though Chippa were in the ascendancy, they allowed themselves to be caught out at the back. And again they handed the advantage back to the opponents when Gift Motupa scored to take Baroka back into the lead.
Chippa needed some inspiration off the bench, so they replaced Mayambela with Lerato Manzini, hoping the substitute forward could provide some impetus in attack.
But with the PE side throwing everything into the attack in a bid to equalise, they left themselves short at the back and Baroka capitalised again.
It was Motupa who benefited, with the forward scoring his second on the night to make it 3-1.
African News Agency (ANA)