Swallows come from two goals down to deny Pirates top spot

Moroka Swallows launched a great comeback to beat Orlando Pirates 3-2 in an exciting Soweto derby at the Dobsonville Stadium on Tuesday night

Orlando Pirates started the game like a house on fire, with Roger De Sa fielding what is believed to be his strongest squad against the struggling Moroka Swallows, and it came as no surprise as the visitors took the lead in the second minute of the game through Sfiso Myeni’s boot, after an error from Swallows’ defence that gave striker Takesure Chinyama a chance to pick the Pirates winger.

Pirates pushed forward as they looked to take advantage of Swallows’ sloppy defence. Daine Klate should have doubled the lead a minute later after finding himself alone in the box, but his poorly taken shot was saved by Swallows’ keeper Greg Etafia.

The home side knocked the ball around, as they looked to bounce back, and for their efforts, Swallows won their first corner of the game, but Siyabonga Nomvete could direct his header from the resultant corner, as the ball went over the bar. Katlego Mashego nearly equalized inside 20 minutes, but he couldn’t connect with the ball after a well played cross by Nomvete, however Pirates’ Thabo Matlaba recovered on time to clear the ball off his feet for a corner.

Pirates had an upper hand over Swallows, and they continued to dominate possession with Andile Jali, Oupa Manyisa and Sfiso Myeni combining well, and they won a free-kick just outside the box. Klate stepped up and forced a good save out of Etafia who fisted the ball over the bar for a corner.

Swallows would have Etafia to thank after he rushed off his line to deny Chinyama after some great piece of work by the Pirates striker. However, the visitors were awarded a penalty as the game approached the half time, after the referee adjudged Roger Da Costa to have handled the ball inside the box, and Andile Jali coolly slotted home from the spot to give Pirates a 2-0 lead going into the break.  

Swallows pulled one back on the stroke of half-time through a former Pirates player Katlego Mashego, who had an easy tap in, after a cross from another former Pirates player Dikgang Mabalane, and the score read 2-1 to Pirates at half-time.

Pirates started the second half where they left off in the first half of the game, and they nearly restored their two-goal lead in the opening minutes of the second stanza, but Manyisa failed to score from the ball that looked easier to score than to miss.

Moroka Swallows launched their comeback inside 20 minutes, when Shere Lekgothoane spotted Meyiwa off his line, and unleashed a powerful shot that hit the woodwork, and captain Lefa Tsutsulupa was in the right place at the right time, to equalize with a fine header from the rebound.

The home side showed enthusiasm, and were all over the pitch as Pirates players looked lost after that equalizer. Swallows were awarded a free-kick on the right hand side towards the edge of the box. Mashego provided a deep cross, that found Lerato Chabangu who flicked it home for Swallows’ third goal of the match, 3-2 to Swallows. 

The home side frustrated the vistors and held on for the valuable three points against the Buccaneers. The match ended 3-2 in favour of Moroka Swallows.