Team Ke Yona 1-2 SuperSport United: Matsatsantsa cruise to easy win

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Eric Tinkler bagged his second Ke Yona Challenge trophy, thanks to a routine win over the aspiring professional footballers at the Makhulong Stadium

A dominant first half display saw SuperSport United ease to a comfortable 2-1 win over Team Ke Yona in the Ke Yona Challenge on Sunday afternoon. 

Thuso Phala opened the scoring with a fierce left-footed shot, before Aubrey Modiba doubled the Nedbank Cup champions' lead on the stroke of half-time. 

However, Mondli Mpoto's goalkeeping blunder gifted Team Ke Yona their first goal in open play since the start of the initiative in 2013 when Zamuxolo Mdluli scored from close range deep into stoppage time. 

With no less than six players on national duty with Bafaan Bafana, coach Eric Tinkler gave a few of his fringe stars a run, while the four experienced coaches - Shakes Mashaba, Khabo Zondo, Owen Da Gama and Mike Mangena - on the Team Ke Yona team fielded their strongest possible line-up on the day. 

Sifiso Myeni, who joined the Tshwane giants on loan from Bidvest Wits earlier this week, made his debut, and all eyes were on him to see what he can offer the team.

Tefu Mashamaite marshalled the defence, providing proctection for the young Mpoto in goal. 

Tinkler clearly didn't want to become the first coach to lose to Team Ke Yona, but his team didn't look like they had things under control in the first 35 minutes of the encounter despite enjoying better ball possession as they struggled to hurt their opponents.

However, a brilliant finish by Phala in the 36th minute gave the PSL side some renewed sense of hope.  

Team Ke Yona was all over the place after conceding the goal, and it didn't come as a surprise when Modiba doubled Matsatsantsa's advantage with an easy finish on the stroke of half-time. 

It was a bittersweet moment for Modiba, who captained his side on the day, especially because he came through the Nedbank Ke Yona talent search a few years ago. 

The second half was promising for Team Ke Yona, who pressed high up and gave SuperSport United something to worry about, but with the scoreline at 2-0, it was always going to be difficult for them to mount a serious come back even after the three changes Tinkler made at the start of the second 45 minutes.

However, Zimele Zuma gave Matsatsantsa a scare when his header came off the crossbar in the 66th minute, but that's how close they could come until Mpoto's howler in the closing stages of the game gifted the Team Ke Yona the consolation goal. 

Team Ke Yona won a free-kick after Makhosandile Plaatjie was fouled on the edge of the box deep into stoppage. 

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Mpoto let the resultant free-kick slip through fingers when everyone thought he was in control, and Mdluli was in the right place at the right time to slot the ball into an empty net, much to the delight of the Team Ke Yona bench. 

 

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