PORT Elizabeth semi-professional soccer side Highbury suffered a big blow to their hopes of winning the Eastern Cape ABC Motsepe League when they were defeated 3-1 by FC Buffalo at the Jan Smuts Stadium in East London on Friday.
Second-placed Highbury are in pursuit of log-leaders Angavu Stars of Queenstown, who also suffered a setback when they were defeated by Mthatha Bucks at the weekend.
Both teams remained at the top of the table with 54 points from 25 games, but Stars are leading on goal difference.
Highbury coach Garth Dickinson said the result was disappointing, although he felt his team had played well.
“We had a good game, but the referee killed our beautiful game because he allowed two offside goals for Buffalo,” he said. “Of course I’m disappointed because we were not supposed to lose the match.”
Buffalo scored two goals in the first half and they went to the break leading 2-0. They extended their lead in the second half, while Highbury’s leading goal-scorer Abduraagman Moodien scored a consolation goal for his side.
Despite the loss, Dickinson said they were still close to the finishing line and they were determined to reach the No 1 position on the table.
Meanwhile, Morning Stars beat their neighbours Real City 1-0 in an ABC Motsepe League derby at the Zwide Stadium. The two sides clashed for the second time this season, with City winning the first game.
Sindile Mafongosi scored the only goal of the match in the 15th minute of the first half.
Stars dominated the first half and they could have doubled the score before the break, but missed several scoring chances.
City came back in the second half determined to level the score, but they were not able to find the equaliser. The win gave the hosts some badly needed points to improve their position in the standings.
Stars coach Siyabulela Isaac said he was excited with score because their aim was to finish the season in the top 10.
“We had a great game and we didn’t give our opponents breathing space,” he said. “We will keep the winning spirit in our last few matches remaining and we hope to do even better in our next challenge.” – Mthetho Ndoni