United edge Arrows in KZN derby

Maritzburg United extended their winning streak when they edged provincial rivals Lamontville golden Arrows 1-0 at the King Zwelithini Stadium.

Rheece Evans scored the only goal of the match midway through the first half in a game which saw little in the way of goalmouth action.

After a cagey start to the game with both sides failing to get behind the defence, it was the visitors who fired the first shot in anger in the 21st minute when Orlando Smeekes drilled a powerful freekick towards the target, but Pavels Steinbors was able to parry the ball wide.

However, they did find the back of the net from the resulting corner when Steinbors failed to connect with Delron Buckley’s delivery, allowing defender Rheece Evans to bury his shot from close range.

Abafana Bes’thende went in search of the equaliser and came close four minutes later when Norman Smith found some space on the right side of the penalty area, but he dragged his shot across and wide of the far post.

United almost extended their lead from another setpiece in the 33rd minute when Mario Booysen met a corner from Buckley at the near post, but the big centre-back directed his header wide of the upright as the visitors took their slender lead to the break.

Manqoba Mngqithi’s men continue to see a lot of the ball after the interval but were guilty of giving the ball away in the final third, however, Nkanyiso Mlotshwa managed to create some space on the edge of the box in the 57th minute, but his effort went wide.

Five minutes Philani Shange managed to get his shot on target, but his attempt lacked power and Shu-Aib Walters was able to make a fairly comfortable low save.

With the Team of Choice determined to protect their lead in the closing stages of the game, Arrows continued to commit men forward and almost found the equaliser in the 81st minute, but substitute Bonginkosi Ntuli saw his glancing header going inches wide of the far post.

The home side had another chance to salvage a point in the 90th minute when Joseph Musonda delivered a cross from the right, but Thamsanqa Gabuza also headed wide of the far post as United held on for maximum points.

The results sees Maritzburg United climbing up to fourth place with 19 points after 10 games, while Arrows remain in 12th place with 9 points.

Lamontville Golden Arrows 0

Maritzburg United (1) 1 (Evans 21’)


Lamontville Golden Arrows: Steinbors, Tom, Zwane, Krjauklis, Musonda, Shange, Khuboni (Ntuli 72’), Nene, Mlotshwa (Mapolisa 70’), Zulu (Gabuza 46’), Smith

Maritzburg United: Walters, Cloete, Booysen M, Awal, Evans (Booysen D 84’), Morton, Matuka, Buckley, Hendricks, Smeekes (Mandaza 65’), Malajila (Yende 88’)