Cosmos maul Mbombela 4-1 to keep league hopes alive

Tebogo “Messi” Tlolane was back in action for Ezenkosi

Jomo Cosmos turned on the style to hand out a 4-1 bashing to Mbombela United last Sunday and keep their promotions dreams alive.

Ezenkosi turned a seemingly hopeless situation around at the Vosloorus Stadium after going into half time deadlocked at 0-0, breaking Mbombela’s stiff resistance to score four backbreaking goals in a second half blitz.

Captain Linda Mntambo flagged off the goals rush just before the hour mark when he stormed into the box and fired home a sublime chip from Silas Maziya.

Barely three minutes later, Ivorian centre back, Ange Lebahi doubled Cosmos’ lead when he rose above Mbombela defenders to nod in a left wing cross by Mduduzi Sibeko.

In the 68th minute, substitute Mxolisi Macuphu increased the tally to 3-0, beating goalkeeper Ludick Mkhatshwa with a low shot after receiving a pass from Mntambo.

With nine minutes left on the clock, Tshepo Liphoko gave Mbombela a lifeline when he capitalized on a defensive blunder to reduce the deficit.

However, Clifford Mulenga piled more misery on his former team and put the icing on a very tasty cake when he fired home Ezenkosi’s fourth goal in stoppage time after coming on for Mkhize.

It was an invigorating performance and end to end attacking football that sent Ezenkosi supporters into raptures.

Sunday’s game also marked the return of Cosmos midfield sensation, Tebogo “Messi” Tlolane following a groin injury that sidelined the 22-year-old since the start of the season.

The victory took Cosmos to third on the NFD log with 21 points from 12 matches, just two points behind log leaders Highlands Park.

His introduction for Mntambo in the dying minutes was met with a standing ovation from spectators.

Cosmos’ next league game is away to Witbank Spurs on Saturday.

Jomo Cosmos (0) 4 (Mntambo 58’ Lebahi 61’ Macuphu 68’ Mulenga 90+1) 
Mbombela United (0) 1 Liphoko 81’) 
Referee: Tshidiso Mkhwanazi
COSMOS (4-3-3): K Ndlovu – Lingwati, Nsabiyumva, Lebahi, Gebhardt – Haoseb, Sibeko, Mntambo (Capt) (Tebogo Tlolane 89’), Maziya, Makgatho (Macuphu 46’) – Mkhize (Mulenga 82’)
COACH: Jomo Sono
MBOMBELA (4-4-2): Ludick Mkhatshwa – Njabulo Sethebe, Wandile Mabuza (Thapelo More 72’), Victor Shongwe, Cohen Stander – Tshediso Patjie, Inky Masuku (Isaac Nana 90’), Xolani Nkala (Tshepo Liphoko 61’), Siphesihle Zwane – Velile Zitha, Siphesihle Sangweni
COACH: Aschwin Sutton

BOOKED: Nsabiyumva, Macuphu

-Mark Ogagan


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