PSL Wrap: AmaZulu and Royal AM fire blanks in KZN Derby, Swallows fight back to stun Baroka

18:01 SAST 2022/04/24
Andre De Jong AmaZulu Ndumiso Mabena Royal AM.
Usuthu moved a position up on the log after squeezing a point from their KwaZulu-Natal opponents

AmaZulu and Royal AM shared points after a goalless Premier Soccer League KwaZulu-Natal Derby on Sunday at Chatsworth Stadium in Durban.

Royal AM remain second on the log while Usuthu – who had numerous chances to score but ended up wasting them - moved to seventh place after sharing the points.

Meanwhile, AmaZulu won an early free-kick which was taken by Abbubaker Mobara, but Royal AM were capable of dealing with it as they cleared it away.

In the ninth minute, Thabo Matlaba and Ndumiso Mabena started a good build-up for the home side, but their forward surge was cut short by AmaZulu’s defenders, who dealt with the attack quite calmly.

After the home side had enjoyed quite some possession, Usuthu almost broke the deadlock in the 13th minute, but Mxolisi Kunene was flagged down for offside as he led the visitors’ attacks.

In the 21st minute, Luvuyo Memela superbly laid the ball for Andre De Jong, who could not hit the target with his final shot that went wide.

A minute before the half-time break, Matlaba made a vital block when he stopped De Jong from launching a strike from a promising goal-scoring position after the New Zealand star was set through on goal by Xola Mlambo.

In the 52nd minute, Royal AM came close to breaking the deadlock, but Mokete Mogaila – whose pleas for a penalty in the 50th minute were dismissed – shot wide after he collected a good pass from Mxolisi Macuphu.

Usuthu made their first change in the 56th minute when Kunene was withdrawn and Sphesihle Maduna was thrown into action with the score still goalless.

Another chance for Royal AM to grab the lead went to waste a minute before the hour mark. Victor Letsoalo shot wide after he was spotted by Macuphu as the home side’s determination to get a goal was felt more than before.

AmaZulu made two more changes in the 68th minute when De Jong was replaced by Siphelele Mthembu and Mlambo came off for Mbongeni Gumede.

Hugo Nyame superbly stopped another AmaZulu attack when he cleared a good ball that had been delivered into the box by Thembela Skhakhane in the 78th minute. Thereafter, another substitution was made by the visitors as Keagan Buchanan replaced Memela.

Elsewhere, at Dobsonville Stadium, Swallows fought back and stunned struggling Baroka, winning the PSL duel by a 3-2 margin.

Sekela Sithole scored the opening goal for Baroka in the 20th minute before Richard Mbulu extended their lead with the second goal in the 49th minute.

However, Swallows fought back and, within two minutes in the second half, they scored two goals. Mwape Musonda scored the first in the 62nd minute before he quickly returned with an equalizer in the 63rd minute. Musa Nyatama provided assists for the two goals scored by the Zambian.

Impressive Nyatama scored the third goal for Swallows in the 87th minute to punish bottom-placed Baroka.