Clever Boys sneak out the drop zone
Bidvest Wits held off a late challenge from Bloemfontein Celtic at the Bidvest Stadium on Friday night to record a narrow 1-0 win and move out the relegation zone.
- Bidvest Wits 1 Bloem Celtic 0
- Maruping sent off in the 31st minute
- Keene scores a 32nd minute penalty
- Wits move to 13th position
There was little to separate the two sides over the 90 minutes in a match which saw both team limited to scraps of opportunities in front of goal. Despite going down to 10 men after conceding a 30th minute penalty, Celtic were always in the game and made the hosts sweat for the win.
Apart from a Lehlohonolo Majoro flick which went well wide, neither team had any chances on goal in a cagey first 30 minutes of the match.
It needed a moment of inspiration in attack or a mistake at the back to shake the game up and it was the latter as Celtic defender Mpho Maruping lost the plot when he blatantly beat away a free kick with his hand right in front of his goal, despite goalkeeper Patrick Tingyemb appearing well positioned.
Clever Boys marksman James Keene capitalised to maximum effect when he sent Tingyemb the wrong way and blasted the ball into the roof of the net.
There was action after the half time break as Celtic midfielder Lantshene Phalane had a long range effort kept out by Darren Keet before Mbhazima Rikhotso tangled with Students midfielder Daylon Claasen in the box but failed to win a penalty for the visitors.
The hosts had half chances to add to their advantage but Vincent Pule was kept out by a good save from Tingyemb while Claasen just failed to pick out Majoro in front of goal.
The Free State side upped the ante in search of an equaliser and had a couple of half chances before Deon Hotto brilliantly plucked a long pass out the air only to fire wide from right in front of goal three minutes from time.
There some more anxious moments for the Students but they managed to hold on for their second win in three matches as they moved out the drop zone.