Jomo Cosmos suffered yet another 1-0 defeat to TS Galaxy in Makhulong last Sunday, as the Mpumalanga-based side completed a cup and league double over Ezenkosi.
Zakhele Lepasa’s well-taken goal just before half time condemned Jomo Sono’s men to their 10th NFD defeat to put the team in a precarious position going into the final nine games of the season.
The home side thus went down to Galaxy for the second time in a space of one week following their Nedbank Cup Round of 16 loss to the Rockets at the same venue.
Cosmos boss, Jomo Sono, reshuffled his team to accommodate 19-year-old winger, Onke Moletshe who was making his first start of the season, while influential midfielder Tebogo Mabula returned to the starting XI after a long spell out on the sidelines.
The game also saw goalkeeper Melusi Buthelezi getting a nod after regular choice Mwenya Chibwe was ruled out with a toe injury, while midfielder Tumi Ngwepe also got a starting shirt after being frozen out since December, 2018.
Sono’s changes, however, had little impact on the game as the team failed to take advantage of the few chances created.
There were few sparks from the 19-year-old Moletshe though, with the youngster dazzling on the flanks and nearly getting on the score sheet midway through the opening half.
Before now, Moletshe’s only appearance was as a second half sub in a 1-0 defeat of Cape Umoya United in Vosloorus last October.
TS Galaxy broke the deadlock just before half time when on-loan Orlando Pirates striker, Zakhele Lepasa struck following a counter attack down the right flank.
The Cosmos bench rang second half changes that saw Chibuike Ohizu, Kagiso Ndlovu and Bafana Tshawe coming in to add some bite to Ezenkosi’s forward line.
However, the visitors backline led by goalkeeper Ludwe Mpakumpaku displayed astute resilience to ward off Ezenkosi’s desperate incursions and seal all three points.
Despite Sunday’s defeat, Cosmos remained 12th on the NFD log with 23 points in 21 matches, while TS Galaxy moved up to 7th with 30 points from the same number of games.
Ezenkosi travel to Cape Town this weekend to face Cape Umoya United in continuation of the league campaign.
NFD, 24 February, 2019; Makhulong Stadium
JOMO COSMOS 0
TS GALAXY (1) 1 (Lepasa 41’)
Ref: Jelly Chavani
COSMOS: Buthelezi – Tshangane, Umukoro, Lebahi ©, Hanamub (Tshawe 67’) – Mabula, S. Ledwaba, Ngwepe (Ohizu 67’), Moletshe, Maziya (KG Ndlovu 66’) – Masuku.
SUBS NOT USED: Ngqobe, Khwinana, S. Nkosi, Kekana.
COACH: Jomo Sono
GALAXY: Ludwe Mpakumpaku – Mfundo Phungwayo, Thabo Makhele, Austin Dube, Terrence Mashego – Nation Ndlovu, Sizwe Mdlinzo, Sihle Nduli, Tshegofatso Nyama (Lethabo Mashifana 75’), Snethemba Ngidi (Stanley Makgoka 62’) – Zakhele Lepasa (Tshepo Chaine 63’).
SUBS NOT USED:
COACH: Daniel Malesela
BOOKED: N. Ndlovu, Dube.