MATCH CENTRE

SAT 22 SEPTEMBER 2018, 20:15, GOBLE PARK STADIUM

1
VS
0

Free State Stars overcome Highlands Park

by Staff Reporter

Sat September 22, 22:24

Free State Stars beat Highlands Park 1-0 in an Absa Premiership match at the Goble Park on Saturday night.

As a result, Ea Lla Koto moved to 10th spot on the league table, while the Lions of the North remained eighth on the standings.

The Lions of the North began the game well as they looked to grab an early goal which would have unsettled the Ea Lla Koto defence.

Lindokuhle Mbatha unleashed a shot from range two minutes into the game and his effort narrowly missed the target.

Highlands were looking to record their second successive league win, while Stars were keen to snap their four-match winless run.

Linda Bhengu, who was eager to impress, saw his effort from range miss the target in the 20th minute as Ea Lla Koto searched for the opening goal.

Stars duo Nyiko Bhengu and Goodman Dlamini both also missed the target with the half-time half approaching.

Highlands' defence which was led by Sello Motsepe managed to contain the hosts until the match referee blew the half-time whistle.

The score was 0-0 at the interval following a tightly contested first-half between Stars and Highlands.

Highlands head coach Owen Da Gama made the first change of the game prior to the start of the second-half.

Moeketsi Sekola, who is a former Free State Stars striker, replaced Molibedi Mokoena as the visitors looked to break the deadlock.

However, it was Ea Lla Koto who took the lead four minutes before the hour-mark after some good work by experienced centre forward Eleazar Rodgers.

The lanky player directed the ball towards Tshepho Tema with his head and the latter directed the ball home to make it 1-0 to Stars, much to the delight of the home ground.

Mbatha tried to restore parity with a long-range shot in the 68th minute, but the diminutive attacker’s effort missed the target without testing Stars keeper Badra Ali Sangare.

The hosts then suffered a blow as they were reduced to 10 men in the 75th minute after Nyiko Mobbie was given a straight red card having made a dangerous challenge.

Stars head coach Luc Eymael reacted by introducing Mpho Maruping, who is a defensive midfielder by trade, with 13 minutes left on the clock.

Sangare had to produce a brilliant finger-tip save to deny Highlands attacker Peter Shalulile in the closing stages of the game.

The hosts then held on to their slender lead and ultimately, Stars ran out 1-0 winners over Highlands on the night.

FS Stars (0) 1 (Tema 56')
Highlands 0

FS Stars: Sangare, Masehe, Mahamutsa, Phungwayo, Tema, Dlamini, Makhaula, Bhengu (Moruping 77'), Jappie (Mbhele 89'), Mobbie, Rodgers (Matlakala 85').

Highlands: Kapini, Motsepe, Sibande, L.Mokoena, Msimango, Mvala, Mbatha, Ramoraka, M.Mokoena (Sekola 46’), Nyembe (Motlafi 64’), Hoaseb (Shalulile 69’).

MATCH STATISTICS
MATCH VENUE REFEREE
LEAGUE MATCH GOBLE PARK STADIUM
FREE STATE STARS GOALS HIGHLANDS PARK FC GOALS
17. Tshepo Tema (56')
CAUTIONS DISMISSALS CAUTIONS DISMISSALS
1
FREE STATE STARS STARTING LINEUP HIGHLANDS PARK FC STARTING LINEUP
Goalkeeper
23
Goalkeeper
16
Defender
75'
2
Defender
69'
45
29
Defender
46'
0
Defender
28
Defender
33
Defender
56'
17
Defender
20
Midfielder
26
Defender
21
Midfielder
4
Defender
34
Midfielder
5
Midfielder
43
Midfielder
89'
19
Midfielder
14
Forward/Striker
9
Midfielder
64'
31
Forward/Striker
77'
0
Midfielder
23
SUBSTITUTIONS
Mpho Maruping
Midfielder
77'
25
Moeketsi Sekola
Forward/Striker
46'
27
Sifiso Mbhele
Defender
89'
20
Thabo Motlafi
Midfielder
64'
17
Peter Shalulile
Forward/Striker
69'
38
CARDS
Nyiko Mobbie
Defender
75'
2
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
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