Amadou Soukouna’s late goal earned Maritzburg United a 1-0 win at wasteful Marumo Gallants in their DStv Premiership clash at Harry Gwala Stadium on Wednesday evening.
The Team of Choice had the early pressure, showing signs of high pressing and glimpses of attacking presence on goal.
The home side continued to look more dangerous when Richard Zumah led a counter attack before picking out Rowan Human in the box who controlled and fired a half volley but failed to keep it on target in the ninth minute of the contest.
However, Bahlabane ba Ntwa were not discouraged, and started moving forward in numbers hoping to break the deadlock.
With Gallants fighting so hard to stabilise the game, it was Ernst Middendorp’s side who dominated large parts of the half, but they were unable to find a way past the Limpopo-based outfit goalkeeper Washington Arubi.
The Blue Army kept on coming, and Gallants could not contain their surge.
Maritzburg were the better side in the first half and had their struggles in the final third continued.
The showpiece went into the interval with nothing to separate both teams.
A sensational second-half Gallants grew in confidence at the same rate at which Maritzburg’s energy waned in the first 45 Minutes.
The turnaround was swift and overwhelming for the hosts, who never looked like responding to cause an upset for the visitors.
In the 56th minute of the showdown, Marcel Engelhardt was quick off his line to deny Gallants an opener as he made a last ditch block at the centre of the goal.
With all Sebastien Migne’s side dominance in the second period, Maritzburg tried to gain their momentum when Brandon Theron delivered a pinpoint cross from the left but Arubi cleared it off the toes of Leletu Skelem.
When we thought the game will end in a stalemate, French striker Amoud Soukouna found the back of the net in stoppage time to earn his side all the much-needed three points.
As a result, Gallants will remain at the basement of the DStv Premiership log standings with a point after three games, whereas Maritzburg are currently seventh on the table with six points from four outings.
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By Mauwane Raophala