Absa Premiership

Citizens battle back for point in Soweto

Ayanda Patosi (Gallo Images)
Ayanda Patosi (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - An improved second-half display from Cape Town City saw them battle back from two goals down to earn a 2-2 draw with Orlando Pirates at the Orlando Stadium on Wednesday.

Orlando Pirates bossed proceedings in the first half and they put Cape Town City under pressure from the get-go.

Vincent Pule had an early sniff at goal as he curled a free-kick into the side-netting from 20 yards out on the right in the third minute.

The home fans were celebrating just five minutes later when Augustine Mulenga latched onto a fine ball over the top from Thembinkosi Lorch and beat Peter Leeuwenburgh from 10 yards out on the left.

The Citizens looked for a swift response as Riyaad Norodien struck the crossbar from just outside the box on the right in the 10th minute and Roland Putsche volleyed straight at Siyabonga Mpontshane on the rebound from nine yards out.

The Buccaneers were soon threatening again and Mulenga failed to keep his shot down from 14 yards out on the left in the 14th minute, before Happy Jele forced Leeuwenburgh into a sharp save with a header from a corner moments later and the follow-up was deflected behind at the right post.

However, Pirates doubled their lead from the resulting corner as Maela arrived at the back post to power a header past the Dutch keeper.

Pule missed the target with two volleys from inside the area, while Mulenga also cleared the bar with a strike from 22 yards out as the half-hour mark approached.

But City managed to stem the tide for the remainder of the half and looked reinvigorated after the restart, with Norodien fizzing a left-footed shot just over the bar from 20 yards out on 54 minutes, before Patosi drew a good save out of Mpontshane with a dipping free-kick from 20 yards out three minutes later.

Pirates went close again on 65 minutes as Xola Mlambo linked up well with Mulenga in the final third before forcing Leeuwenburgh to tip over his fierce strike from inside the D.

The visitors pulled one back four minutes later with a fine finish from Patosi, who brought a clearance under control on his chest inside the D and volleyed into the top-left corner of the net.

They were level on 77 minutes as Patosi did the damage once more. He whipped in a free-kick from the left that eluded everyone and nestled in the bottom-right corner of the goal, with Mpontshane unmoved.

The Soweto giants almost hit back within seconds as Luvuyo Memela released Linda Mntambo clean through on goal with a neat flick, but the substitute fired wide of the right post from 19 yards out with just the keeper 6to beat.

Leeuwenburgh ensured his team came away with a share of the spoils when he kept out Mulenga's first-time shot from 16 yards out with his foot in the 86th minute.

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