University Sports South Africa
Follow @unisportsa on Twitter Follow us on Instagram Follow us on Facebook

 
University Sports South Africa
AerobicsAquaticsArcheryAthleticsBadmintonBasketballBodybuildingBoxingCanoeingCheerleadingChessCricketCross CountryCyclingDance SportDartsDisability SportFencingFootballGolfGymnasticsHandballHockeyJudoKarateNetballOrienteeringRowingRugbySnow and Ice SportSoftballSports ClimbingSquashSupa-PoolSurfingTable TennisTaekwondoTennisTriathlonUnderwater SportsVolleyballYachting

USSA
News

VUT FC sends Golden Arrows FC crashing out of the Nedbank Cup


Soweto - Dobsonville Stadium, Saturday, 8 February 2020, is a day that has been etched in the annals of South African football history. A forth tier South African Breweries (SAB) Regional League team, Vaal University of Technology Football Club (VUT FC), vanquished a Professional Soccer League (PSL) team, Golden Arrows FC, in an epic game of ‘footy’ that tested the mettle of both teams to the furthest limits and spawning a rivalry that is sure to be of gigantic proportions when the belligerents meet again in the future. This feat is the first of its kind and it has sent shockwaves throughout the football circles.

VUT FC’s game plan for Golden Arrows FC was already formulated in 2019. It was simple. Golden Arrows would come out attacking from the start, the pressure would be absorbed by defending deep and when the attack loses its impetus, VUT FC would counter-attack. As though coach Stanley Nkoana were prescient, it happened exactly as foretold. Takalani Mawelewele scored the first goal of the game in only four minutes, hitting the top corner of the net. The intent was made clear; VUT FC will not cower in front of big teams; it was their time to show that they belong in the big stage.

Arrows levelled the score in the 11th minute of the match after Sibusiso Mokondo scored an own goal when attempting to clear an airborne ball, however, this did not deter the team from pursuing its strategy relentlessly, after all, the opposition had not scored even though the game was level. Nkoana’s men persisted in absorbing all the pressure unleashed upon them and then counter-attacking after neutralising the onslaughts. It was only the finishing which let down the Blue Army in their counter-attacks; and they were numerous.

No sooner had the game begun, than it was half time, with scores level at one a piece. The forth tier team walking out of the ground, oozing with confidence while the PSL team walked out in sheer disbelief. In the days leading up to the game, Nkoana played mind games on Arrow’s esteemed coach, Steve Komphela, by displaying an unbending attitude toward the expertise commanded by him and his chargés during the pre-game press conference. ‘’To us, SAFA structure teams, PSL teams, NFD teams are an open book us whereas we are a closed book to them. Yes, I’ve watched a couple of games of Arrows and I’ve identified areas where I think we can do our best, maybe to hurt them or to overcome them. So, we have a plan for them and if they make a mistake of undermining us, they will see a problem. I’m confident in my production machines; we may be playing in the Castle League but come Saturday, and we’ll see. Like I said, the best tactics will win the game,’’ he said.

Golden Arrows FC was fired up coming from the half-time break. They created a number of chances in the early phases but were unable to take advantage in the 18-yard area due to VUT FC’s authoritative and disciplined defence. The game was a toe-toe affair but the difficulty of playing on wet ground began to take its toll on the underdogs more than it did the professionals. The disparity between the two sides was becoming apparent in the late stages of the game; one side displaying better technique and the other side displaying more will power. Golden Arrows FC had a clear chance in the 74th minute to score the winner after Siphamandla Sabelo dribbled past a few defenders and laid the ball back to Lindokuhle Msthali, who dragged the shot wide. In a dramatic turn of events, Arrows took the lead in the 86th minute after Michael Gumede took a brilliant overhead kick when the Blue Army failed to deal with a free-kick.

Stanley Nkoana’s men did not lie down like sitting ducks, following the setback. This was a team who’s confidence had been on the rise since defeating Orlando Pirates Football Club’s development team, Pele Pele FC, 2-1 in November 2019, to qualify for the 2020 Nedbank Cup. In yet another dramatic turn of events, VUT FC found the back of the net in the 88th minute of the game after Reitumetse Hlongwane fired a ‘scorcher’ past Arrow’s keeper, Sifiso Mhlungwana, from a cross to level the score at 2-2, taking the game to extra time. Arrows fought desperately to vanquish the hosts, finding the back of the net from a set-piece situation in the 5th minute of extra time, but the goal was disallowed for a foul in the build-up.

A heart stopping moment descended upon the Blue Army when the visitors nearly snatched the winner with ten minutes of extra time remaining after Seth Parusnath found Mtshali at the near post but the keeper, Obakeng Naane, pulled off a spectacular save. Utter silence befell the stadium; the crowds were in disbelief over the miraculous save. The game went into a penalty shoot-out, an area where VUT FC is very strong. They held their nerves, going on to win the shoot-out 6-5 with a sudden death goal by the goalkeeper. The win has given the Blue Army a spot in the last 16 where they will face-off against Sundowns FC.

The importance of University Sport South Africa (USSA) cannot be overlooked. It is through this controlling body that the teams and individuals are able to take part in tournaments of this magnitude. The role that USSA championships play in setting up the trajectory that leads sports people to qualify for and participate at higher levels of competition, both nationally and internationally, is crucial to the South African sports landscape. Countless giants of South African sport who have gone on to become world champions have come through the USSA system.



Posted by Vusi Zwane on 2020-02-12.
University Sports South Africa
Follow @unisportsa on Twitter Follow us on Instagram Follow us on Facebook
Contact Us  |  Search  |  Terms & Conditions  |  Registration   
Design Copyright © ZAbra.co.za January 2017
USSA