Mangaung now in good position to claim title

2019-02-20 06:02
Bloemfontein Young Tigers' midfielder Thabiso Ramoseeli (left) battles for the ball with Mangaung Unite's forward Theko Thako during their clubs derby tie played at the University of the Free State’s sport complex in Bloemfontein on Saturday (16/02).Photo: Teboho Setena

Bloemfontein Young Tigers' midfielder Thabiso Ramoseeli (left) battles for the ball with Mangaung Unite's forward Theko Thako during their clubs derby tie played at the University of the Free State’s sport complex in Bloemfontein on Saturday (16/02).Photo: Teboho Setena

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Mangaung Unite’s draw with home rivals Bloemfontein Young Tigers in their derby of the ABC Motsepe League stood them in a good stead to claim the Free State title.

The two Bloemfontein clubs settled for a point each after they failed to score in their intriguing return outing played at the University of the Free State’s Bloemfontein sport complex on Saturday (16/02).

This was Tigers’ seventh draw and Mangaung’s third in the competition.

Tigers, on 40 points in third position, had hoped for a sweet revenge of the 0 – 1 defeat by Mangaung in the first leg.

However, their inability to convert few goal-scoring chances let them down.

With a victory Tigers could have ended Mangaung’s long-standing unbeaten record.

The result saw Mangaung consolidate their position at the helm and extend their unbeaten record to 20 matches in the league.

Topping with 54 points the leaders need 20 points of the remaining ten league fixtures (30 points) to wrap up the Free State championship contest.

If they succeed to collect 20 points Mangaung would finish on 74 points while second-placed Harmony (43 points), would finish on 72 points if they win all ten matches.

The log leaders are still enjoying the 12-points lead off the chasing pack of clubs in contention to win the provincial championship.

By the look of things, Mangaung overcame their biggest test against Tigers in their title-winning aspirations. The outcome still have them on course to quality for the promotion play-offs for a place in the National First Division League.

Having lost significant ground in the ABC Motsepe League provincial championship challenge, Tigers can focus on finishing in second position overall given the possibilities of achieving the target.

They also finished in the same position last season after Mangaung won on superior goal difference.

As things stand, Tigers will compete for the second prize in the league with Harmony and Sibanye Golden Stars, who are in second place on 39 points following a 0 – 1 defeat by Kovsies.

Mangaung is gearing-up for another tough derby against Kovsies, who will also be seeking to hand the leaders their first defeat when they face off in Bloemfontein on Saturday (23/02).

Kick-off is at 15:00.

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