Cape Town City conceded their first loss in the Absa Premiership after suffering a 2-1 defeat to Baroka at the Peter Makaba Stadium on Wednesday evening, writes DYLAN APPOLIS.
The Citizens started the game on the front foot after producing two chances early on through Matthew Rusike and Surprise Ralani, but neither attempt troubled Baroka goalkeeper Ayanda Dlamini.
The home side responded swiftly and broke the deadlock in the seventh minute when Mpho Kgaswane caught City napping to find the net from close range after latching on to Talent Chawapiwa’s set-piece to make it 1-0.
City should have levelled matters in the 18th minute, but Roland Putsche steered his curling effort straight into the gloves of Dlamini.
The home side then doubled their lead four minutes later when they won a free kick in a dangerous crossing area. City failed to deal with the ball into the area as Matome Kgoetyane’s glancing header beats Sage Stephens to go in off the post, 2-0.
Dlamini came to his sides rescue on the half hour mark after he rushed out to make himself big before pulling off a diving save to prevent Mpho Matsi from finding the net.
Benni McCarthy’s side saw plenty of the ball in the first half, but the home side head into the break with a 2-0 lead.
The visitors made two chances at the break which saw Siphelele Mthembu and Craig Martin come on to replace Ralani and Matsi respectively.
City wasted no time and reduced the deficit two minutes into the second half when substitute Mthembu slotted the ball home after the Baroka keeper failed to deal with a cross into the area, 2-1.
Bakgaga had a chance to extend their lead in the 64th minute when Ananias Gebhardt sent an inviting ball into the City penalty area, but could not find a teammate in the area as City cleared the ball to safety.
McCarthy made his final change when he brought on Allan Kateregga for Riyaad Norodien while Baroka made their first substitute when they replaced goal-scorer Kgoetyane for Richard Matloga.
The Citizens nearly equalised with six minutes remaining when Kateregga blazed his one-touch effort over the bar from close range.
Baroka almost snatched a late goal for Baroka after Chawapiwa found Mduduzi Mdantsane on the right before he darted past his opponent, but Stephens did well to rash out and dive on the ball.
The home side held on to their two-goal lead over City until the final whistle to claim all three points at the Peter Mokaba Stadium.
In other Absa Premiership results:
Chippa United 0-1 Orlando Pirates
Golden Arrows 0-2 Bloemfontein Celtic
Free State Stars 2-1 Maritzburg United
SuperSport United 1-0 AmaZulu