Mweene nets winner for Stars

Free State Stars goalkeeper and inspirational leader Kennedy Mweene was the difference between his team and Jomo Cosmos, scoring the only goal of the match from the penalty spot.

Both teams struggled to put their foot on the ball and pass it around on a bumpy Goble Park surface. So the opening half of this Absa Premiership match was disjointed and lacked any real creative spark.

Jomo Cosmos’ new Zimbabwean signing Taongo Dondo was in the thick of the action from the start, clearly wanting to make his presence felt.

But it was Ea Lla Koto who had the first chance on goal. Striker Aleni Lebyane had an early opportunity, but failed to get a final touch on the ball inside the six-yard area.

Just before the interval Noah Chivuta attempted to cross the ball instead of testing the goalkeeper, which was not the best decision. Then Lebyane sent a header just wide as the teams headed into the break.

In the second half Dondo was again in the thick of the action. But his left-footed shot from outside the area flew over the bar and didn’t trouble Kennedy Mweene in goal.

In the 74th minute, Stars’ new signing from Togo - Ouro Sedata - headed wide from a Diego Brown corner kick.

In the final fifteen minutes the home side lifted their game and went close through Edward Mnqele and Mzikayise Mashaba.

But then goalkeeper Mweene showed his strikers how to do it, netting from the penalty spot after Mashaba was brought down by Themba Shabalala inside the danger area.

The match became a little more heated after the goal as frustration krept in and saw a number of fouls inside the final few minutes of the encounter.

Former South African Under 23 international Thapelo Tshilo made a return to Jomo Cosmos, having re-joined from Mamelodi Sundowns where he was seeing little action.

Free State Stars (0) 1 (Mweene 80pen)

Jomo Cosmos 0

FS Stars: Mweene – Mashaba, Mhamha, Gilbert – Ouro-Akoriko, Masehe – Chivuta (Brown 58), Manqele, Wome, Mashego – Lebyane (Motaung 82)

Cosmos: Phali – Maseko, Tshilo, Appiah, Kobola – Nhlapho, Pila – Tukane (Theletsane 70), Maebela, Dondo – Nontshinga (Loke 58)