Result: Chippa United 1-0 AmaZulu
Date: 29 February 2020
Venue: Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Chippa United moved five points clear of the relegation zone after narrowly defeating AmaZulu 1-0 in the Absa Premiership on Saturday afternoon.
The Chilli Boys brought back the regulars who rested in the Nedbank Cup loss to Bidvest Wits on Monday, with only goalkeeper Veli Mothwa, Gaona Modisane and Silas Maziya surviving.
Chippa came to the game on a back of three straight league defeats and were winless in their five matches while Usuthu were languishing rock bottom of the log after suffering their fourth loss in their last five games with defeat to Abafana Bes'thende.
It was no surprise to see the sides were cagey in the first stanza and could not create clear openings, as the opening 45 minutes went scoreless in Port Elizabeth.
However, Ruzaigh Gamildien gave United a good start in the second stanza, as he broke the deadlock within three minutes from the break with a strike from the centre of the box.
Sphelele Maduna had a chance to level matters for Jozef Vukusic's troops five minutes later after going clear on goal but his low strike was saved by Mothwa.
As time began to tick, Usuthu top scorer Bonginkosi Ntuli also came close to snatching the equaliser just after the hour-mark but his header was parried away by Mothwa.
Vukusic gave youngster Bayanda Shangase his senior team debut in the last 20 minutes in place of Talent Chawapiwa adding firepower upfront.
Siyethemba Sithebe had a good chance to finally get the equaliser for AmaZulu in the last nine minutes after receiving a pass from Shangase from just outside the box but his strike sailed just wide as Chippa held on in the end to victory.
Here's how they lined up:
Chippa: 34.Mothwa, 17. Damons, 13. Malepe, 20. K.Moyo, 22. Modisane, 2. Masalesa, 21. Maphanga, 11. Maziya, 13. Maphangule, 4. Gamildien, 40. Twala.
Subs: 1. Mazibuko, 15. Kwem, 47. Nsabiyumba, 8. Rakhale, 6. Jodwana, 44. Komane, 32. Lentjies.
AmaZulu: 28. Mbatha, 39. Masilela, 27. Xoki, 18. Booysen, 6. Ncobeni 26. Magaqa, 10. Sithebe, 34. Maduna, 2. Magubane, 19. Chawapihwa, 7. Ntuli.
Subs: 43. Boshoff, 25. P.Gumede, 17. M.Gumede, 32. Khumalo, 91. Shangase, 31. Lacny, 93. Ngubane.