DURBAN – A ten-man Maritzburg United suffered their second consecutive DSTV Premiership loss as they were beaten 1-0 by Cape Town City at the Harry Gwala Stadium in Pietermaritzburg on Wednesday night.
Mduduzi Mdantsane scored the only goal of the game as he fired in a shot into the bottom corner beyond the reach of Maritzburg goalkeeper Jethren Barr in the 9th minute.
Bradley Ralani attempted to double the lead for City three minutes later after spotting Barr off his line but the crossbar prevented Maritzburg from conceding.
Keagen Buchanan came close to equalizing for the Team of Choice in the 31st minute of the game but City goalkeeper Peter Leeuwenburgh managed t palm his shot away.
Things went from made to worse for Eric Tinkler’s side in the 43rd minute as defender Riyaaz Ismail was shown a red-card by referee Luxolo Badi following a challenge on Craig Martin which denied City a goal scoring opportunity.
The red card took a toll on Maritzburg as they were unable to really trouble City goalkeeper Leeuweburgh in the second-half.
City did receive a scare in the 54th minute as goal scorer Mdantsane was in pain with what appeared to be a shoulder injury and was replaced by Mpho Makola.
Terrence Mashego managed to find Martin with a cross eight minutes later but his effort was saved by Barr. The Maritzburg keeper produced another fine save three minutes later to again deny Martin following a cross by Ralani.
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Maritzburg had their best chance of the game in the 70th minute after Thabiso Kutumela won the ball and played in substitute Judas Moseamedi.The latter dragged his shot wide.
Maritzburg did show signs of attempting to push City in the game but the defending of the visitors and in particular Taariq Fielies was solid on the day.
With two defeats from their opening two games, there will now be pressure on Tinkler’s side to kick-start their season. They look to be lacking confidence in defence following the off-season departures of former goalkeeper Richard Ofori and defender Siyanda Xulu.
Tinkler’s charges will next be in action next Tuesday against Chippa United. A defeat in that game will be a serious cause for concern for the KZN side.