AmaZulu top Man City on Mandela Day
19 July 2013
Premier Soccer League club AmaZulu handed English giants Manchester City the second loss of their tour of South Africa when they beat the Sky Blues 2-1 in a Nelson Mandela Football Invitational match at Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban on Thursday.
City were under the guidance of Brian Kidd after new manager Manuel Pellegrini
departed for Chile. Kidd said it was for personal reasons.
They showed their support for former President Mandela by wearing shirts with
the name Mandela and the number 95 on the back before the start of the contest.
'Privilege and honour'
"I think for Manchester City it's a great privilege and honour to be invited to play
on Mr Mandela's birthday," Kidd told the Manchester City website after the game.
"I was lucky to be out here in '93 and to have met him. I've met him twice. He's
a wonderful man, who has fought for the freedom of the people of South Africa. You
can't say enough,"
"He's a world icon and as I say from our club's point of view we're very privileged
to take part in his 95th birthday celebrations.
"It has been wonderful. The people have been very warm to us and we've been
On the subject of the game itself, Kidd said: "I thought it was a very, very good
workout again for the fitness levels. The boys have worked really hard. It was a
really good workout. It's just what we wanted."
South African football
Questioned about the standard of football in South Africa, Kidd was very
complimentary, saying: "It's very good. I've been around South Africa many times
and it's a very good standard. Physically they're tough and technically they're very
Manchester City put in a markedly improved performance over their first match
and created an early chance when Samir Nasri tested Usuthu captain Tapuwa Kapini
with a dipping shot from a free kick. Kapini was up to the
challenge, diving to his
right to knock the ball away.
AmaZulu, though, took the lead in the 20th minute after an error by left-back
Aleksandar Kolorov, whose pass back to goalkeeper Joe Hart was intercepted by
Bongani Ndulula, who rounded Hart before steering the ball into the net.
City were back on level terms shortly after that when Scott Sinclair picked out
Yaya Toure with a header. The Ivory Coast star was off target with his header, but
the ball fell kindly for James Milner, who blasted home from close range to make it 1-
Nasri threatened again just before the half-hour mark, but Kapini pulled off a
good save of a low shot to deny the French international.
Both teams made a number of changes at the break, which appeared to serve
the English side better as they dominated play in the second half by attacking out
In the 61st minute, Kolarov picked out Edin Dzeko with a pinpoint cross, but
on for Kapini, continued the fine work in the AmaZulu goal by pulling
off an excellent save.
The game began to lose some of its structure, but with time running short City
substitute Abdul Razak lost possession and in his effort to win it back brought down
Mark van Heerden in the box. Just two minutes remained on the clock when the
referee pointed to the penalty spot.
Carlington Nyadombo was handed the responsibility of taking the spot kick. He
fired the ball into the net beyond the reach of substitute goalkeeper Costel
Pantilimon to give the Usuthu an encouraging 2-1 victory on Mandela Day.