Swallows, AmaZulu share spoils

Moroka Swallows and AmaZulu settled for a point each when their Absa Premiership encounter ended in a 0-0 draw at the Dobsonville Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

Both sides had their moments in the game but in the end a draw was a fair result as both teams proved to be solid at the back.

The hosts took the initiative early on and fired the first shot on target in the 5th minute when Lefa Tsutsulupa set the ball up for Lerato Chabangu, but he shot straight at Philani Zikalala from outside the box.

Three minutes later Siyabonga Nomvethe used his pace to cut in from the left side before drilling a low shot towards the target, but Zikalala was on hand to make a save at his near post.

Usuthu had their first effort in the 16th minute as Goodman Dlamini played the ball back to Khulegani Madondo just outside the penalty area, but his effort lacked the pace and direction to trouble Greg Etafia.

The match lost a bit of spark after the water break midway through the half but it was the visitors who started applying pressure, forcing Swallows into making rash tackles, which resulted in cautions for the likes of Luvhengo Mungomeni and Asavela Mbekile.

Craig Rosslee’s men had a glorious chance to take the lead when Bongani Ndulula headed Ayanda Dlamini’s cross towards Goodman, who missed the target from the edge of the box with Etafia off his line.

Goodman then found Ayanda Dlamini on the right side of the box on the stroke of halftime but he dragged his low shot inches wide of the far post with Ndulula sliding in a second too late.

Usuthu threatened early in the second half with Goodman receiving a pass from Ayanda in the 54th minute before dribbling into the right side of the box, only to curl his shot wide of the upright.

Six minutes later substitute Dikgang Mabalane picked out Chabangu just inside the box, but again he was unable to get enough power on his effort to beat Zikalala.

Both sides tried to push for the winner but the next shot came from defender Tamsanqa Teyise in the 75th minute as he let loose from a distance, firing straight at the Swallows goalkeeper.

Usuthu came close to stealing a third straight win late in the game when Ayanda sprung the offside trap on the right side of the box, only to fire against the sidenetting from a tight angle with Etafia out of the equation.

The hosts also had an opportunity to steal maximum points in added time when Giorgi Nergadze picked out Nomvethe will a lobbed pass on the left side of the box, but the veteran sent his volley wide of the upright.

Teams

Swallows: Etafia, Mapemba, Mungomeni, Isaacs, Mokgothu, Mbekile, Nergadze, Chabangu, Tsutsulupa (Ogle 77’), Nomvethe, Manqele (Mabalane 58’)

AmaZulu: Zikalala, Macala, Hlanti, Nyadombo, Teyise, Madondo, Arwuah, Dlamini G, Manqana (Liphoko 72’), Dlamini A, Ndulula