cape town city benni mccarthy

Cape Town City collected six points Friday to retain a slight chance of winning the South African Premiership for the first time in only their third season of top-flight football.

They began the day on 41 points and were awarded a 3-0 victory over Bloemfontein Celtic after the match between the clubs was abandoned in the first half over a crowd invasion.

Another three points came later when, after surviving a first-half onslaught from lowly Chippa United in Port Elizabeth, Shane Roberts and Gift Links scored late goals for a 2-0 victory.

The victory lifted City to third place on 47 points, six behind leaders Orlando Pirates with two rounds remaining, and the sides clash on May 4 in Cape Town.

Defending champions Mamelodi Sundowns are second on 50 points and Bidvest Wits fourth, behind Cape Town on goals scored.

“We plan to make Pirates sweat,” vowed Cape Town coach and former South Africa star Benni McCarthy. “They better be ready for a fight because we are.

“Chippa let us off the hook in the first half when our patience came to the rescue. We needed fresh legs later on and youngsters Roberts and Links came off the bench to score.”

While Cape Town celebrated the six points, second-from-bottom Chippa slipped deeper into trouble with just two matches left.

They are a point below Baroka FC having played one match more, and their next fixture is away to sixth-place Polokwane City.

“We are going to have to do it (escape relegation) the hard way,” accepted coach Clinton Larsen. “How we did not score three or four goals before half-time is baffling.”

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