Match Review – BIDVest Wits F.C vs Bloemfontein Celtic F.C
Wits unlucky against Celtic
BIDVest Wits can feel extremely hard done by, after drawing 1-1 to Bloemfontein Celtic on Saturday evening at the BIDVest stadium in Johannesburg. “I am extremely disappointed with the loss. We should have won,” said coach Roger De Sa.
Despite being the better team for majority of the night, controlling possession and dictating play, the referee seemed determined to make sure they didn’t walk away with all three points. On numerous occasions the referee let clear fouls slip by, awarded a dubious penalty in favour of Celtic and denied a clear Wits spot-kick.
The Clever Boys certainly started the quicker of the two teams and were on the attack from the word go. Marawaan Bantam and Thando Mngomeni in particular looked in fine form providing the driving force for Wits from the middle of the park.
Consequently, it wasn’t long before Wits’ first attempt on goal which came courtesy of Bantam in the ninth minute. The Clever Boys midfielder pulled the best out of Shu-Aib Walters in the Celtic goal when he curled a beautiful free-kick around the defensive wall only to be denied by a diving full stretch save.
However, it wasn’t long before Wits’ early pressure paid off when Calvin Kadi headed them in-front only three minutes later from a well rehearsed training ground move. Bantam delivered with pin-point accuracy a corner-kick to the front post where Kadi rose above the Phunya Sele Sele defence to head home, 1-0. Consequently that was also Kadi’s fourth goal of his 2009/10 Premiership campaign.
The only time Wits looked like conceding a goal was when Celtic players found themselves in what looked like off-side positions and even then they struggled to break the Clever Boys’ resistance.
Initially in the 18th minute Prince Olomu slipped a through-ball to Tlou Segolela who looked to be in an off-side position but the linesmen let play go on. Fortunately for Wits, Segolela, with only the keeper to beat, pulled his shot wide.
Then, only five minutes later, Sandile Ndlovu looked to be off-side when he had a great opportunity to level the scoring: Segolela made a teasing run down the left flank before cutting inside and delivering a quality cross into the box to find Ndlovu six yards out from goal, but he too headed his attempt wide of goal.
Those were the only two chances created by Phunya Sele Sele in an opening 45 minutes in which Wits did most of the talking, controlling possession and dictating terms, often creating chances at will.
The second half was more of the same as Wits, again, took a strangle hold of the midfield and should have doubled their lead in the 55th minute. Another well worked free-kick resulted in Bantam crossing the ball onto the head of an unmarked Tefu Mashamaite who missed the target from only five yards out.
The last twenty minutes saw Celtic throw players forward in attack in search of the equaliser that would save their unbeaten record in the league, which the man in black must have felt it necessary to preserve when he awarded a dubious penalty in the 78th minute. The referee adjudged substitute Anderson Yoboue of pulling his opponent to ground inside the 18 yard box during a corner-kick.
“Only Stevie Wonder knows how that was a penalty,” Da Sa’s response after the match.
Patrick Malokase made no mistake from the spot smashing the ball into the roof of the net, 1-1.
That goal made for a frantic final ten minutes as the game went to and fro with both sides looking for the decisive winner. In the end it was not forthcoming for either team and it finished 1-1.
BIDVest Wits (1) 1 (Kadi 22′)
Bloemfontein Celtic (0) 1 (Malokase 78′ pen)
Wits: Keet; Barkhuizen, Gariseb, Mashamaite, Phungwayo, Haskins, Bantam, Morton, Mngomeni [Yoboue 59' (Sibande 90')], Kadi, Myeni
Celtic: Walters; Sambu, Tsotetsi, Goldstone (Kanono 69′), Motlhaping, Khaile, Olomu, Spandeel, Ndlovu (Malokase 65′), Ramolesa (Mayambela 46′), Segolela