Cape Town City into MTN8 semis

Sammy Seabi of Polokwane City evades challenge from Roland Putsche of Cape Town City FC during the 2017 MTN 8 quarterfinal © Backpagepix

Cape Town City have edged into the semifinals of the 2017 MTN8 after overcoming Polokwane City 1-0 at the Cape Town Stadium on Saturday.

Sibusiso Mbonani’s own goal in the first half was the difference between the teams, though Benni McCarthy’s side ultimately deserved the victory given the number of scoring chances they created.

The Citizens join defending champions Bidvest Wits in tomorrow’s semifinal draw, which will be completed by the winners of the matches between Kaizer Chiefs and SuperSport United, as well as Mamelodi Sundowns and Maritzburg United.

The hosts suffered a blow before the match even kicked off, with Teko Modise - who was originally named in their starting XI - ruled out due to an injury sustained in the warm-up. He was replaced by Thabo Nodada.

Cape Town settled into early dominance and created the first clear chance of the game when Lebogang Manyama put Lehlohonolo Majoro in on goal in the 15th minute, but the striker couldn’t get the better of goalkeeper George Chigova.

Just over 10 minutes later the team in blue and yellow were denied an opening goal when Majoro tapped home Lyle Lakay’s low cross from close range but was adjudged offside. Television replays suggested it was a marginal call from the linesman.

The home side’s pressure finally paid off in the 38th minute when a corner kick resulted in Polokwane defender Sibusiso Mbonani looking to cushion a header back into his goalkeeper’s hands, but he only succeeded in putting a looping effort over Chigova to break the deadlock with an unfortunate own goal.

Rise and Shine created a couple of chances for Puleng Tlolane early in the second half, both of which forced Shu-Aib Walters into relatively straightforward saves but gave the hosts notice that their opponents still posed a notable attacking threat.

Yet CT City should have been awarded a penalty just before the midway point of the second half, with Thapelo Tshilo clearly handling Manyama’s goal-bound shot in the process of making a block. The referee waved away the hosts’ appeals.

CTC went on to create an array of further promising attacking situations which they failed to capitalise on, but Rise and Shine were unable to punish the hosts’ profligacy and the match finished 1-0 to see McCarthy claim a victory on his coaching debut.

Cape Town City (1) 1 (Mbonani og 38’)
Polokwane City 0

Cape Town City: Walters, Mkhize, Johannes, Gumede, Dove, Masina (Patosi 66’), Putsche, Nodada, Lakay, Manyama (Seedat 90+1’), Majoro (Matsi 83’)

Polokwane City: Chigova, Semenya, Mbonani, Tshilo, Hlongwane, J. Maluleke, Seabi (W. Maluleke 80’), Phiri (Vilakazi 56’), Mngomezulu, Ramagalela, Tlolane (Mncwango 78’)