MATCH CENTRE

SAT 04 AUGUST 2018, 18:00, BIDVEST STADIUM

3
VS
0

Bidvest Wits beat Free State Stars to go top

by Austin Ditlhobolo

Sat August 04, 20:05

Bidvest Wits thrashed Free State Stars 3-0 in their maiden 2018/19 Absa Premiership match at the Bidvest Stadium in Johannesburg on Saturday evening.

As a result, the Clever Boys moved to the top of the league table, while Ea Lla Koto are placed 16th on the standings.

The Clever Boys were the better side in the opening stages of the game and threatened first through Cole Alexander seven minutes into the game.

The attacking midfielder found some space outside the Stars box and he unleashed a shot which sailed over the crossbar.

Wits then deservedly took the deadlock three minutes later through their inspirational captain Thulani Hlatshwayo.

The central defender scored with a tap in to make it 1-0 to Wits following a good move by the hosts with Terrance Dzvukamanja grabbing an assist.

Ea Lla Koto had a chance to respond with a goal following a mistake in the Wits defence in the 12th minute.

However, Stars' playmaker Goodman Dlamini hit the upright with Wits goalkeeper Darren Keet beaten and the hosts survived a scare.

Namibia international Deon Hotto, who was making his official debut for Wits, was looking lively for the home side.

The skillful winger delivered a good cross into Stars box in the 20th minute and goalkeeper Badre Ali Sangare was forced to gather the ball.

The Clever Boys did double their lead on the half-hour mark when Hotto's free-kick found Mxolisi Macuphu, who headed home to make it 2-0 to Wits.

Ea Lla Koto tried to push for the equalizing goal with their new centre forward Eleazar Rodgers leading the visitors' attack.

However, Wits held on their lead and they were 2-0 up at the interval having dominated the first-half.

Stars came back rejuvenated after their half-time team talk with their Belgian coach Luc Eymael.

The visitors came very close to pulling one back through Sinethemba Jantjie 12 minutes into the second-half.

The attacking midfielder beat his marker, before forcing Wits shot-stopper Keet into magnificent save - finger-tipping the ball over the crossbar.

Eymael then decided to pull out Jantjie and he introduced Yusf Jappie in the 64th minute as Ea Lla Koto looked to score their first goal.

Ea Lla Koto pushed forward in numbers, but they were left vulnerable at the back in the closing stages of the game.

The Clever Boys punished the visitors in the 74th minute as Hotto beat Sangare from close range to make it 3-0 to Wits following a quick move by the hosts.

Stars then launched late attacks in the dying minutes of the game as they looked to grab a late consolation goal.

However, Stars stood firm at the back and ultimately, they emerged 3-0 winners over Stars on the evening.

Wits (2) 3 (Hlatshwayo 8', Macuphu 30', Hotto 74')

FS Stars (0) 0

Wits: Keet, Hlatshwayo, Johannes, Monare, Hotto, Hlanti, Mkhwanazi, Alexander, Motupa (Mzwakali 81'), Macuphu (Murray 90'), Dzvukamanja (Pelembe 63').

FS Stars: Sangare, Masehe, Mbhele (Mobbie 77'), Mahamutsa, Keita, Klaas (Matlakala 54'), Makhaula, Tchilimbou, Janjtie (Jappie 64'), Dlamini, Rodgers.

MATCH STATISTICS
MATCH VENUE REFEREE
LEAGUE MATCH BIDVEST STADIUM
BIDVEST WITS GOALS FREE STATE STARS GOALS
3. Thulani Hlatshwayo (10')
30. Mxolisi Macuphu (30')
11. Deon Hotto (74')
CAUTIONS DISMISSALS CAUTIONS DISMISSALS
1
BIDVEST WITS STARTING LINEUP FREE STATE STARS STARTING LINEUP
Goalkeeper
1
Goalkeeper
23
Defender
15
Defender
22
Defender
16
Defender
28
Defender
13
Defender
77'
19
Defender
10'
3
Defender
54'
35
Midfielder
17
Midfielder
26
Midfielder
74'
11
Midfielder
27
Midfielder
81'
12
Midfielder
4
Midfielder
30'
30
Midfielder
5
Midfielder
63'
0
Midfielder
64'
11
Midfielder
8
Forward/Striker
32'
0
SUBSTITUTIONS
Elias Pelembe
Midfielder
63'
11
Maboke Matlakala
Forward/Striker
54'
0
Bantu Mzawkali
Midfielder
81'
20
Yusuf Jappie
Midfielder
64'
0
Nyiko Mobbie
Defender
77'
2
CARDS
Eleazar Rodgers
Forward/Striker
32'
0
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
COMMENTS
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