Bidvest Wits Set Up Pirates Final
Man of the hour Ryan Chapman, fresh off a brace in his side’s last outing, created a goal and scored one himself to see BidVest Wits beat Santos 3-0 in their Telkom Knockout semifinal at Bidvest Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
Asive Langwe scored the opening goal and Sifiso Vilakazi the the third goal in the dying minutes of the match.
The opening 45 minutes produced a couple of chances on goal for both teams, but neither team really took the ascendancy in the first half as they failed to convert their opportunities.
The half certainly didn’t start as many football pundits expected as the Cape Town side dominated the first ten minutes, playing a rather exciting brand of football, instead of their counter-attacking defensive style.
Still, despite playing the better football early on, Santos did not really trouble the Wits goal. They did muster a couple of long range shots with Tawonga Chimodzi shooting in the fifth minute and Graham King letting fly in the eight minute, but neither shot caused any concern.
As the half progressed, though, Wits slowly found their footing in the match and began taking control of the midfield battle.
And it came as no surprise when Sifiso Myeni struck the crossbar in the 21st minute with a thunderous 25-yard free-kick. The Santos keeper could only watch as the ball sailed over his head and struck the woodwork before bouncing away from danger.
Two minutes later and an attack down the left flank saw Wits with their second chance to score after Asive Langwe got in front of his marker at the near post to meet a low cross from the left. The Clever Boy, though, pushed his effort inches wide from six-yards out.
After those couple of goalmouth scares the People’s Team quickly returned to their defensive counter-attacking approach. And it nearly paid dividends in the 28th minute.
A swift counter-attacking move saw Jonathan Armogam break through on goal and with just the keeper to beat. The Santos midfielder, however, squandered the golden chance as he chipped the keeper from just inside the box, and while he saw his effort beat the keeper, it sailed agonisingly over the crossbar.
Both teams tightened up their defence after that which resulted in a dull final 15 minutes of the half.
The start of the second stanza saw Wits begin the brighter of the two teams as they played the more positive football. Consequently, we only had to wait eight minutes into the half before we saw the game’s opening goal
After an initial goalmouth scramble inside the Santos area, Ryan Chapman was quickest to react as he powerfully pulled the ball across the face of goal from the right side of the six-yard box which was met by the left foot of Langwe from a couple yards out, 1-0.
Then in the 63rd minute, ten minutes after creating his side’s first goal, some sloppy defending from Santos allowed Chapman to score Wits second goal.
Chapman easily beat a defender inside the box, nut-megging Pere Ariweriayi, to leave himself with just the keeper to beat and the Students’ striker made no mistake burying the ball past Tshepo Motsoeneng from ten yards out, 2-0.
With Wits in firm control of the match after taking a two goal lead, they eased off and were content to go through the paces as Santos hardly threatened in attack.
Substitute Sifiso Vilakazi confirmed the victory for the Students with the games third goal, a well-placed 18-yard shot in the 93rd minute that found the top right-hand corner, 3-0.
Bidvest Wits (1) 1 (Langwe 53’, Chapman 63, Sif. Vilakazi 93’)
Santos (0) 0
Wits: Murambadoro; Mngomezulu; Gumede, Spencer (Philips 73’), Phungwayo, Sib. Vilakazi (Sif Vialakzi 87’), Sibande, Maselesa (Rodrigues 77’), Myeni, Chapman, Langwe
Santos: Motsoeneng; Macala, W. Arendse, Ariweriyai, Jampies, Armogam (Basie 56’), Kefile, Chimodzi (S. Arendse 64’), King, Isaacs, Wana (Shabangu 78’)