Johannesburg – Nigerian Olisa Ndah conceded an 89th-minute own goal to give Kaizer Chiefs a 1-0 win over Orlando Pirates on Saturday in the highest profile match of the South African Premiership season.
Mozambican Edmilson Dove struck the ball from inside Chiefs’ half more with hope than purpose as a disappointing Soweto derby watched by a 78 182 crowd seemed destined to end goalless.
But as the long, lofted kick descended into Pirates’ box, back-tracking Ndah headed the ball toward his goal and it looped over out-of-position goalkeeper Sipho Chaine into the net.
This was another bitter Soweto derby for centre-back Ndah, who conceded the late penalty from which Chiefs scored to beat Pirates last season.
The Nigerian came off the bench in the second half in Johannesburg for his first appearance since helping the Buccaneers win a knockout competition final last November.
Full time score: (Ndah o.g 89’) Kaizer Chiefs 1 : 0 Orlando Pirates
DStv Man of the Match: Edmilson Dove #Amakhosi4Life #DStvPrem #UnityInAction #SowetoDerby pic.twitter.com/nLyODuuKLO
— Kaizer Chiefs (@KaizerChiefs) February 25, 2023
It was a dramatic climax to a match featuring the biggest crowd-pullers in South African sport with Pirates playing the final 30 minutes a man short after captain Innocent Maela was sent off.
Maela received a straight red card after a last-defender foul on a recent Chiefs recruit, Democratic Republic of Congo-born forward Christian Saile.
Victory was a massive relief for Chiefs coach and former star Arthur Zwane following just one win in six previous league matches this year.
His half-time advice proved prophetic as he told his players to “put Pirates under pressure and force them to make mistakes”.
The result did not alter the positions of the clubs with Pirates remaining third and Chiefs fifth. Both have 31 points, 24 less than runaway leaders Mamelodi Sundowns, with nine rounds left.
Second-placed SuperSport United beat relegation-threatened Maritzburg United 2-0 in Pretoria on Friday with Bradley Grobler scoring his 100th club career goal to clinch victory.
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