Home Sport Maritzburg United, Stellenbosch FC in goalless stalemate

Maritzburg United, Stellenbosch FC in goalless stalemate

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Junior Leandro Mendieta of Stellenbosch FC is challenged by Daylon Claasen of Maritzburg United during their DStv Premiership match at Harry Gwala Stadium in Pietermaritzburg on Sunday
Junior Leandro Mendieta of Stellenbosch FC is challenged by Daylon Claasen of Maritzburg United during their DStv Premiership match at Harry Gwala Stadium in Pietermaritzburg on Sunday. Picture: Muzi Ntombela, BackpagePix

Maritzburg United and Stellenbosch FC walked away from their DStv Premiership clash in the KwaZulu-Natal capital with a point each.

Pietermaritzburg – Maritzburg United and Stellenbosch FC played to a goalless draw in a DStv Premiership match, at the Harry Gwala Stadium on Sunday evening.

The result saw the Team of Choice remain 12th on the league standings, while Stellies moved up to the fifth spot on the log despite the stalemate.

Leletu Skelem looked lively in the opening proceedings as the speedy attacker faced his former employers for the first time since joining Maritzburg from Stellies in August this year.

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The 23-year-old player’s deflected attempt forced goalkeeper Sage Stephens into a comfortable save with the Team of Choice looking to grab an early goal.

However, Stellies grew in confidence as the match progressed, and they began pressing the hosts’ defence with Junior Mendieta making some dangerous runs into the opposition’s box.

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Maritzburg, though, were able to contain Mendieta, who recently picked up the Man of the Match award after the game against Mamelodi Sundowns, and the score was 0-0 at halftime.

Stellies dominated the game after the restart, and keeper Marcel Engelhardt was the busier of the two shot-stoppers as he denied Antonio van Wyk twice within the first 10 minutes of the second half.

Maritzburg coach Ernst Middendorp reacted by introducing an attack-minded duo of Lungelo Bhengu and Amadou Soukouna on the hour-mark with the hosts looking to break the deadlock.

The visitors continued to surge forward, and they thought they had broken the deadlock when Mendieta hit the back of the net with 20 minutes left, but the goal was disallowed for offside.

Ultimately, the match ended in a 0-0 draw, with the two teams having failed to take their chances in a match paused twice due to a power failure at the Harry Gwala Stadium.

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