SuperSport win to finish year top

SuperSport United moved to the top of the Absa Premiership standings following a 2-1 win over Polokwane City at the Lucas Moripe Stadium in Atterdigeville on Wednesday evening.

Rodney Ramagalela had given Rise and Shine an early lead, but goals from Cole Alexander and Jeremy Brockie sealed all three points for Matsatsantsa.

Stuart Baxter's men will as a result enter 2017 atop the standings, level on points with Bidvest Wits and Cape Town City.

Rise and Shine hit the front as early as the sixth minute through Ramagalela, the striker with his second goal in as many matches. A careless mistake by Onismor Bhasera punished by the former Mamelodi Sundowns man, who turned away from Clayton Daniels before curling the ball into the top corner of the net.

Matsatsantsa went in search of an immediate reply and Aubrey Modiba should have done better with his attempt five minutes later.

Playing in a more advanced role under Stuart Baxter, the former Cape Town City man found himself with time and space in the box following good movement by Reneilwe Letsholonyane - Modiba, though, unable to hit target with his left-footed effort.

Alexander leveled matters in the 36th minute of the match, the midfielder with a quite extraordinary finish from the tightest of angles against his former employers. His cross-cum-shot flying over the head of George Chigova and into the back of the net.

Sammy Seabi was unlucky not to restore Rise and Shine's lead a minute later with his header attempt cannoning off the woodwork.

SuperSport, though, ended the half on the front foot with Thabo Mnyamane's snap shot from the edge of the area flying inches over Chigova's crossbar, 1-1 at the interval.

Ramagalela squandered a golden chance to complete his brace in the 56th minute. Having gotten the better of Dean Furman in midfield, the striker had acres of space in front of him, but instead of picking out a teammate he went on his own - skying his resulting shot wide of goal.

Mnyamane forced Chigova into a good save from a free-kick attempt in the 64th minute. The burly Zimbabwean shifting well to right before directing the ball from danger.

Jeremy Brockie put SuperSport in front five minutes later. The second-half substitute converting from the penalty spot after Thabang Klaas brought down Letsholonyane inside the area.

Despite a few nervy moments in the closing stages of the clash, SuperSport held on for all three points as they rise to the top of the log standings.

SuperSport United (1) 2 (Alexander 36' Brockie 69')
Polokwane City (1) 1 (Ramagalela 6')

United: Pieterse; Boxall, Daniels, Booysen, Bhasera - Furman, Letsholonyane, Modiba (Farmer 87'), Alexander - Mnyamane, Nkhatha (Brockie 46')

City: Chigova; Semenya, Tema (Mbonani 81'), Maponyane, Klaas - Seabi (Mngomezulu 88'), Manaka, Jembula, Maluleke - Tlolane (Ndou 67'), Ramagalela