“That’s why we bought Pete. We brought him in for that. You need a keeper like all the great clubs."
COACH Benni McCarthy has hailed Peter Leeuwenburgh as the best goalkeeper in the Premier Soccer League.
The Cape Town shot-stopper pulled off a number of crucial saves, the last a trademark effort from point-blank range that help secure a 1-0 home Premiership derby win over promoted Stellenbosch FC at the Athlone Stadium on Saturday night.
Chris David netted in the seventh minute of the game played in front of 5 000 fans.
McCarthy felt his charges deserved to come away with all three points. “It was an enjoyable derby but we made life difficult for ourselves. We definitely made Stellies think they were in the contest for all our missed chances because towards the last five minutes you are fighting for your life; you throw people forward.
“I think they caught us a little flat-footed and on the back foot,” he said.
“That’s why we bought Pete. We brought him in for that. You need a keeper like all the great clubs.
Manchester City, Liverpool and Manchester United, they all have top keepers and Cape Town City has one too. He kept us in the game when the heat was on and we ended up getting the result we were wanting.
“But we must be more dominant when in the pound seats.”
David found the target in a hard-fought affair with a left-footed low shot inside the big box to give his side their first victory of the new season.
The Citizens, who began their campaign with a 2-2 draw away at Baroka FC last weekend, move up four places to fourth in the standings on four points, two behind pacesetters Kaizer Chiefs who have won both their games to date.
Stellies remain 12th with one point collected from their goalless draw away to Chippa United.
City owned their Winelands rivals in the first half and should have been a couple of goals to the good before the break.
Striker Kermit Erasmus, who scored against Baroka, was put into space by a fine pass from captain Thami Mkhize but wasn’t able to get the better of Stellies goalkeeper Boy de Jong who kept the shot wide to his right side with a parry back into play. Surprise Ralani was on hand to meet the rebound but ballooned his shot over the crossbar.
Meanwhile, left-footed Gift Links on the right wing had a couple of shots on target in the second stanza.
The South African Under-23 international should have doubled the advantage when he rounded De Jong, but he hit the ball without power, allowing a Stellie defender the time to backtrack and make the interception.
David had a chance to bag a brace shortly before he was substituted with a curling shot that went wide.
The fact that City’s three league goals to date have been scored by different players will please McCarthy. Defender Keanu Cupido, who made his first senior debut for Bafana Bafana at the recent 2019 Cosafa Cup, scored in the opening round of matches.