Orlando Pirates overcome 10-man Cape Town City in MTN8 clash, Newsline

CAPE TOWN – Orlando Pirates’ new signing Terrence Dzvukamanja celebrated his debut with the solitary goal of a hard-fought MTN8 quarter-final clash against 10-man Cape Town City at Orlando Stadium on Saturday evening.

Dzvukamanja was part of six new Pirates players on the night, with coach Josef Zinnbauer looking for a fresh start in a tournament – and against a team that have previously had the better of the Buccaneers.

The victory ensured it was the first time Pirates advanced past the quarter-final stage of the lucrative competition since 2014, and only the second time they had ever beaten their rivals from the Mother City.

The challenge was made significantly easier when City were reduced to 10 men on the half-hour mark after Fagrie Lakay, who had signed a new long-term contract earlier this week, chopped down Wayde Jooste in midfield.

Lakay’s challenge was reckless and could have severely injured Jooste, who was making his Pirates debut after completing a move from Highlands Park during the off-season.

Lakay’s red card was a real blow to City, especially as it was the visitors who started the game full of energy. The Cape Town side used the high press with good effect, exerting early pressure on the Pirates defence.

During one such moment, Lakay created a moment of uncertainty in the Buccaneers penalty area, but, fortunately for the home side, they were able to clear the danger.

Pirates were almost caught out again after 15 minutes when City midfielder Mduduzi Mdantsane dispossessed new Bucs captain Thulani Hlatshwayo on the right flank. Once in possession Mdantsane went on a mazy run, piercing through the heart of the Pirates defence but could not get his shot away when it mattered.

Pirates, though, were content to absorb the early City raids before launching a counter-attack of their own. Their first foray into the City’s final third reaped immediate dividends with Jooste showing good skill on the right flank.

Jooste created space to get the cross in by moving the ball to his weaker left foot, but still managed to deliver an inch-perfect ball that found striker Terrence Dzvukamanja unmarked in the City penalty area. Dzvukamanja timed his jump to perfection to head the ball past an unmoved Peter Leeuwenburgh into the far-right corner of City’s goal in the 23rd minute.

Leeuwenburgh, though, had to act swiftly to ensure Pirates’ did not double their advantage shortly before halftime when another sweeping ball from Jooste rattled City’s defence. The lanky Dutchman raced off his line to launch his body full throttle at the ball that was just outside his box, and fortunately for Leeuwenburgh it stuck between his legs inches before Vincent Pule could intercept the pass.

A man down and a goal down, City were certainly starting to feel the strain and were beginning to leave more and more open spaces for Pirates to exploit. It was certainly evident during the second half with Pirates forcing City to relinquish their early high press and lay back a bit more in a bid to limit the damage.

This resulted in a couple of chances with firstly Gabandinho Mhango firing straight at Leeuwenburgh shortly after the restart before Dzvukamanja could have doubled his personal and team’s tally in the 55th minute.

Fortune Makaringe had forced Leeuwenburgh off his line to make another good save, only for the ball to rebound into the path off Dzvukamanja, who had his shot saved off the line.

And the chances kept coming as Pirates grabbed the game by the scruff – with Zakhele Lepasse also failing to kill off City in the 85th with Leeuwenburgh once again keeping his team in the contest with another good save.

The misses almost came back to haunt Pirates right at the death when City’s Bafana Bafana defender Abbubaker Mobara whipped in a delightful cross deep into injury time, but unfortunately for Jan Olde Riekerink’s team Tashreeq Morris could not meet the cross when all it required was a deflection.

Ultimately though Pirates deserved to avenge their loss to City in last season’s bio-bubble.

Orlando Pirates: Sandilands, Wayde Jooste, Hlatshwayo, Nyauza, Ndlovu, Makaringe, Motshwari, Hotto (65), Pule (92), Mhango (80), Terrence Dzvukamanja (65).

Subs: Mpontshane, Jele (92), Monyane, Tlolane (65), Mntambo, Makgaka, Lorch, Dlamini (65), Lepasa (80)

Cape Town City: Leeuwenburgh, Mkhize, Fielies, Mobara, Edmilson, Mokeke (88), Nodada, Roberts (85), Mdantsane (45), Martin, Lakay.

Subs: Anderson, Mashego, Cupido, Makola (85), Kewuti (88), Morris (45), Potouridis.

IOL Sport