Mxolisi Macuphu of Supersport United celebrates his goal with teammates during their Absa Premiership match against Free State Stars at Lucas Moripe Stadium in Pretoria on Sunday. Photo: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

ATTERIDGEVILLE – SuperSport United’s perseverance paid off when they snatched a last-gasp 1-0 victory over Free State Stars in a Premiership fixture played at the Lucas Moripe Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

SuperSport had an early chance to go in front, but Grant Kekana stabbed a header wide of goal. The chances kept coming as the home side pressed home their dominance in the opening stages, with Evans Rusike hitting the post and Mxolisi Macuphu steering a header wide of the target.

Stars were under the cosh, but they managed to hang in and gradually started to work their way into the game. In the 25th minute, they created a chance on the counter after a fine individual run from Sinethemba Jantjie – but, when the ball fell to Makhehlene Makhaula, he could only sky his attempt high and wide.

For SuperSport, Macuphu then had two more opportunities to score, but the first he blasted over the bar and the second was saved by Stars goalkeeper Samkelo Mbambo. Just before the break, SuperSport central defender Clayton Daniels had an inviting chance, but he, too, was wide.

Six minutes into the second half, it was Macuphu with another chance, but again Mbambo was up to the task with a fine save to deny the SuperSport striker. In the 55th minute, Mbambo was beaten by a header from Kekana, but this time the woodwork came to the rescue of the Free State side.

After surviving those few close encounters, Stars then launched a few attacks of their own, with SuperSport goalkeeper Ronwen Williams called into action a few times. Substitute Sibusiso Hlubi also had an opportunity to score for Stars but steered his effort wide.

SuperSport, though, kept plugging away, and they had their reward a minute before full-time when Macuphu looped a header over Mbambo and into the net.

African News Agency (ANA)