When he came back from a goal twice and the game ended in a 2-2 draw, AmaZulu’s resilience and never-ending attitude showed which should provide some comfort to their coach Benni McCarthy.
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However, McCarthy will be concerned about how easily his team gives in in this DStv Premiership game against Stellenbosch FC at Moses Mabhida Stadium on Wednesday night.
His counterpart, Steve Barker, will be the happiest of the two after securing a key out point. But he should also be concerned about the poor defense on his side.
Stellies started on the front foot, took the game to Usuthu and forced them back. This may have been Barker’s right strategy, knowing AmaZulu would have some leg fatigue after a grueling Café Champions League run in recent weeks.
At first, Stellies couldn’t find the right balls to unlock the Usuthu defense. But they finally got it right in the 29th minute when Ashley Du Preez completed another of their attacking moves to put them 1-0 up.
However, their lead was so short lived that if anyone from their camp had tried to call back home in Cape Town about the good news, the call would hardly have been connected once the home side had found the equalizer.
Mattar Cessay completed a move initiated by Luvuyo Memela, who put up Siphelele Mthembu on the left. Mthembu pulled it back for Cessay to finish from close range in the 34th minute.
After this goal the momentum shifted a bit and Usuthu found some rhythm but it remained 1-1 going into half time.
Stellies started off on the front foot again in the second half, pinning their hosts back and having the ball into the back of the net for 10 minutes, but it was ruled out for offside.
However, they got it right a few minutes later when new signing Carlos Ortiz showed a good composure to take his time before picking a spot to beat Veli Mothwa in the Usuthu box.
The Durban side managed to find their way into the game again with Thembela Sikhakhane goal 15 minutes from time to give Usuthu a point.