SUPERSPORT United regained their place at the top of the Absa Premiership table following a 3-1 come-from-behind victory over defending champions Kaizer Chiefs at the Lucas ‘Masterpieces’ Moripe Stadium on Saturday evening.
Bernard Parker opened the scoring for Chiefs, but second half goals from Enocent Mkhabela, Bennett Chenene and Bradley Grober secured a memorable comeback victory for Matsatsantsa.
Cavin Johnson made four changes to the team who beat the University of Pretoria in midweek. Innocent Mdledle returned from injury, while there were also starts for Enocent Mkhabela, David Mathebula and Bradley Grobler.
George Maluleka, who scored the winner in the Tshwane derby, had to settle for a place on the bench alongside top scorer Mame Niang.
Kaizer Chiefs coach Stuart Baxter started with three recognised centre backs from the onset. Morgan Gould, Tefu Mashamaite and Eric Mathoho started in a back three for the Glamour Boys with Gaxa and Masilela starting in the midfield.
Lucky Baloyi was also granted a first appearance, while Lehlohonolo Majoro yet again had to settle for a place on the bench.
Baloyi was handed an early chance to open the scoring in the fourth minute of the encounter. The midfielder was brilliantly setup by Knowledge Musona, but could only manage to drag his attempt wide of goal.
Chiefs supplied all the early pressure, keeping the ball well and subsequently pushing SuperSport deep into their own half.
The home side had to wait till the 18th minute to have their first attempt on goal. Bradley Grobler hit his free-kick attempt against the Amakhosi wall before thumping the rebound way over Itumeleng Khune’s crossbar.
Bernard Parker opened the scoring on the half hour mark from the penalty spot following a hand ball from Edwin Gyimah inside the area. The goal was the Bafana Bafana striker’s third of the season, and second from the spot.
The Amakhosi were deserved leaders at the break. The Glamour Boys came out strong in the second stanza, but it was the home side who scored the next goal.
Enocent Mkhabela levelled matters for the hosts 10 minutes after the interval. David Mathebula played a neat back heel into the path of the former Dikwena man, who in turn hammered the ball past a helpless Khune to register his first goal of the campaign.
Musona should have given the Glamour Boys the lead in the 63rd minute but Ronwen Williams somehow denied the Zimbabwean from point-blank range.
Matsatsantsa took the lead for the first time in the match in the 71st minute of the game. Mkhabela played a superb ball into the path of Thuso Phala, the speedy winger’s shot was brilliantly saved by Khune but Mzanzi’s No 1 could to nothing to stop Bennett Chenene, who found the back of the net from the rebound.
The home side doubled their lead four minutes later through Bradley Grobler. The striker converted from the spot after Siboniso Gaxa brought down Chenene inside the box.
Baxter brought on George Lebese and Majoro in the final five minutes but the two could do little help the Glamour Boys claw their way back into the game.
The loss leaves last season’s league and Nedbank Cup winners in sixth place on the PSL log, while SuperSport are two points clear of Mamelodi Sundowns at the summit of the table.
SuperSport United (0) 3 (Mkhabela 55’ Chenene 71’ Grobler 75’)
Kaizer Chiefs (1) 1 (Parker 30’)
SuperSport United: Williams, Nkausu, Diouf, September, Mdledle, Gyimah, Mkhabela, Phala, Mathebula (Maluleke 87’), Chenene (Maluleka 87’), Grobler
Kaizer Chiefs: Khune, Gaxa, Mashamaite, Gould, Masilela, Mathoho (Lebese 84’), Katsande, Baloyi, Tshabalala, Parker, Musona (Majoro 84’)
The rest of the results are:
Moroka Swallows 3 v Black Aces 2, Golden Arrows 0 v Mamelodi Sundowns 1, Platinum Stars 2 v Polokwane City 1, Maritzburg United 0 v University of Pretoria 0, Bloemfontein Celtic 2 v Free State Stars 2 and Ajax Cape Town 1 v AmaZulu 2.