United get an early boost from win over AmaZulu

2010-08-02 00:00

MARITZBURG United delivered a psychological jab to AmaZulu ahead of the PMB team’s opening Premier Soccer League match against Usuthu at Durban’s Moses Mabhida Stadium on August 29, when they wrestled Uthukela Mayoral Cup crown from their KZN foes at Settler’s Park Stadium in Ladysmith yesterday afternoon.

Bafana Bafana goalkeeper Shu-aib Walters demonstrated just why he was selected for the World Cup squad when he saved three spot kicks, resulting in a 3-2 penalty shoot-out triumph for United.

The match, which did not live up to expectations, ended 1-1 after 90 minutes of regulation time.

Earlier, Usuthu had beaten Bidvest Wits 4-2 on penalties, while United thumped a local Uthukela Invitation XI 3-0.

Newly-appointed AmaZulu coach Manqoba Mngqithi granted several new recruits and trialists a chance to show what they could offer.

Walters saved spot-kicks from Ayanda Dlamini, Litha Ngxabi, Zahuwano Ramson in the final, while Pere Ariwerayi and Tsweu Mokoro converted their penalties. United’s kicks were converted by Rudolf Bester, Mor Diouf and Byrone Hendricks.

United coach Ernst Middendorp said: “This win will boost the players’ confidence before the start of the season. This was all part of preparations. We have seen them at training; now it was good to see them in a competitive match.”

Mngqithi said he is not bothered about the defeat.

“I am not that concerned about today’s results because some players have pressure to impress the technical team. Things look promising. We have a big squad to take us through the season. I believe we are on the right track,” the coach said.

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