Phalane free-kick dumps Citizens out of Nedbank Cup

Royal AM progressed to the Nedbank Cup round of 16 after they came from an early goal down to beat Cape Town City 2-1 at Chatsworth Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

John Maduka's side went behind as early as the ninth minute when Khanyisa Mayo struck for the Citizens to give them the lead at halftime, but an own-goal from Katlego Mokhuoane on 50 minutes leveled matters and Lantshene Phalane completed the comeback win four minutes later.

The first-ever cup-tie between the two clubs was an action-packed affair, with Thwihli Thwahla having the first sight at goal on eight minutes when Victor Letsoalo collected a cross inside the box and fired wide of the right post.

However, City would open the scoring from their first chance moments later as Mayo received the ball from Thamsanqa Mkhize and finished into the top-left corner of the net from inside the area.

The visitors threatened to double their lead twice around the quarter-hour mark, with Craig Martin failing to keep his header down from Terrence Mashego's cross before Tashreeq Morris pulled his shot just wide of the left post from inside the box.

Thabo Matlaba was just unable to pick out the far corner with a strike on the left that went narrowly wide of the right post on 21 minutes, while at the other end of the pitch Mduduzi Mdatsene got on the end of Martin's cross but steered his header over the crossbar in the 25th minute.

The KZN outfit pushed for an equaliser before the break and Thato Lingwati attempted to beat Hugo Marques at his near post from a tight angle on 38 minutes but shot wide before Tebogo Potsane tested the City keeper with an effort from range six minutes later.

It took the hosts just nine second-half minutes to turn the tie on its head. They were level on 50 minutes when Mokhuoane inadvertently put the ball into the back of his own net and Phalane then picked out the top-left corner of the goal from a direct free-kick four minutes later.

Royal AM had their tails up now and both Letsoalo and Potsane went close with shots from inside the box that missed to the left of the goal.

Eric Tinkler's men were limited to shots from distance in the closing stages, with Mokhuoane and substitute Jaeden Rhodes both guilty of failing to hit the target as Thwihli Thwahla held on to advance to the next round of the tournament.

Royal AM (0) 2 (Mokhuoane OG 50', Phalane 54')

Cape Town City (1) 1 (Mayo 9')


Royal AM:P.Nyame, Z.Mkhize, T.Matlaba, T.Lingwati (S.Mabuza 74'), S.Manganyi, K.Mahlasela (J.Ncobeni 89'), V.Letsoalo (M.Mogaila 89'), L.Phalane, T.Potsane (M.Thikazi 89'), M.Machuphu, G.Mashikanya (S.Msomi 67').

Cape Town City: H.Marques, T.Mkhize, I.Fasika, T.Fielies, T.Mashego, T.Mokeke (K.Cupido 79'), R.Mokhuoane, M.Mdantsane (J.Rhodes 67'), C.Martin, T.Morris, K.Mayo (T.Goedeman 79').