MATCH CENTRE

WED 03 FEBRUARY 2016, 19:30, ORLANDO STADIUM

2
VS
1

Bucs edge Ajax 2-1 in Soweto

by BackPageTXT

Wed February 03, 21:31

Orlando Pirates eased the pressure on coach Eric Tinkler with a narrow 2-1 win over Ajax Cape Town in an Absa Premiership clash at Orlando Stadium on Wednesday night.

The Buccaneers claimed the victory thanks to an unfortunate own goal from Rivaldo Coetzee and a strike from Sifiso Myeni, while the Urban Warriors netted through Prince Nxumalo and threatened to recover from a two-goal deficit.

Ajax had a nightmare start to the game, first losing key striker Nathan Paulse to what looked like a broken right wrist after an awkward fall, before Rivaldo Coetzee’s back-pass to Anssi Jaakkola slipped under the goalkeeper’s foot and went over the line for a comical own goal in the 20th minute.

Shortly thereafter Bucs almost doubled their advantage, with Thabo Rakhale touching Thabo Matlaba’s cross just wide of the target, and the hosts then also suffered an injury blow as Thabo Qalinge was withdrawn due to a knock to his hip and replaced by Mpho Makola.

The Pirates substitute had a great chance to score in the 40th minute, but he fluffed his attempted shot when faced with only Jaakkola to beat and then slipped to the floor in a half-hearted attempt to win a penalty which was rightly ignored by the referee.

On 44 minutes Jaakkola made up for his earlier error with a superb double save. He first did well to shift his weight and block a deflected shot from Thandani Ntshumayelo, before brilliantly and bravely denying Ntsikelelo Nyauza from the resulting loose ball.

Pirates finally got the second goal they had been threatening when Sifiso Myeni scored early in second half. The goal was all down to the brilliance of Thamsanqa Gabuza, who charged down a clearance and beat a defender down the left before unselfishly teeing up his teammate to score.

Ajax made a double change after the hour mark – which included the long-awaited return of Tashriq Morris from injury – and the uplift in their tempo paid almost immediate dividends. On 65 minutes Edwin Gyimah was guilty of a poor piece of defending in his own penalty area and Prince Nxumalo took full advantage by winning the ball and beating Brighton Mhlongo with a cool finish to make it 2-1.

The Cape side dominated the last quarter of the match and almost claimed an 88th minute equaliser when Nxumalo got on the end of a corner kick and powered a header against the crossbar, leaving Pirates to hang on for a nervy victory.

The result sees the Buccaneers (20 points from 16 matches) leapfrog the Urban Warriors (19 points from 16 matches) on the PSL table.

Orlando Pirates (1) 2 (Coetzee 20’ og, Myeni 47’)
Ajax Cape Town (0) 1 (Nxumalo 65’)

Pirates: Mhlongo, Nyauza, Mahamutsa (Gumede 46’), Gyimah, Matlaba, Ntshumayelo (Motupa 83’), Sarr, Rakhale, Myeni, Qalinge (Makola 31’), Gabuza

Ajax: Jaakkola, Lartey, Mobara, Coetzee, Lebusa, Isaacs, Norodien (Morris 63’), Graham, Mdabuka, Gamildien (Losper 62’), Paulse (Nxumalo 15’)

BackpageTXT

MATCH STATISTICS
MATCH VENUE REFEREE
LEAGUE MATCH ORLANDO STADIUM
ORLANDO PIRATES GOALS AJAX CAPE TOWN GOALS
3. Rivaldo Coetzee (20') (OG) 15. Prince Nxumalo (65')
11. Sifiso Myeni (47')
CAUTIONS DISMISSALS CAUTIONS DISMISSALS
2 2
ORLANDO PIRATES STARTING LINEUP AJAX CAPE TOWN STARTING LINEUP
Goalkeeper
77'
16
Goalkeeper
32
34
Defender
26
Defender
46'
28
Defender
5
Defender
8
Defender
20'
3
Midfielder
17
Midfielder
18
Midfielder
18
Midfielder
20
Midfielder
47'
11
Midfielder
8
Midfielder
31'
15
Midfielder
63'
31
Midfielder
25
Midfielder
62'
13
Midfielder
83'
6
Midfielder
89'
6
Forward/Striker
60'
31
Forward/Striker
15'
29
SUBSTITUTIONS
Mpho Makola
Midfielder
31'
5
Prince Nxumalo
Forward/Striker
15'
15
Tshepo Gumede
Defender
46'
32
Toriq Losper
Midfielder
62'
10
Gift Motupa
Midfielder
83'
38
Tasriq Morris
Midfielder
63'
14
CARDS
Thamsanqa Gabuza
Forward/Striker
60'
31
Tasriq Morris
Midfielder
64'
14
Brighton Mhlongo
Goalkeeper
77'
16
Travis Graham
Midfielder
89'
6
KEY
Goal
Penalty Missed
Yellow Card
Substitute IN
Own Goal
Penalty Shootout Goal
Yellow / Red Card
Substitute OUT
Penalty
Penalty Shootout Miss
Red Card
Injury
GALLERY
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