Cape Town City failed to break down a stubborn and committed Polokwane City defence as the two clubs played to a 0-0 draw at the Cape Town Stadium on Friday night.
City had two promising opportunities in the opening stages, but Riyaad Norodien stabbed an effort wide of the target, and Dutch midfielder Chris David’s long-range shot was saved by Polokwane goalkeeper George Chigova.
Polokwane had come with the clear intention of keeping things tight, and they always made sure they had numbers behind the ball.
As such, City found it really tough to break down the visitors’ resolute defence. City dominated possession and territory in the first half, but were just not able to find a way to goal.
Two minutes before the break, after a smart attacking move involving Surprise Ralani and Kermit Erasmus in the build-up, David had another opportunity, but fired his attempt over the bar.
The second half unfolded in much the same way, with City hogging the ball and Polokwane content to absorb the pressure.
City had another chance to take the lead in the 57th minute, but Thato Mokeke blasted his shot agonisingly wide of goal.
With the Capetonians looking for some inspiration in attack, coach Benni McCarthy turned to his bench, bringing on Siphelele Mthembu and Craig Martin in place of David and Norodien.
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Polokwane also made a change, with Charlton Mashumba replacing Puleng Tlolane in the 70th minute. But City continued to press, and the chances came.
Erasmus drove one over the bar and, minutes later, Thami Mkhize found Mthembu in the penalty area, but Chigova again came to rescue with a great save to deny the City substitute from scoring.
The Cape side tried their utmost to break the deadlock in the closing stages, but Polokwane held firm.
African News Agency (ANA)