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SA SOCCER NEWS
Ithier grabs later winner for the People's Team 08/09/04
A late goal by Santos striker Jean-Marc Ithier saw the People's Team grab all three points in their Castle Premiership clash against high flying Moroka Swallows at the Athlone Stadium on Wednesday night.

Santos stopped high flying Moroka Swallows from moving to the top of the Castle Premiership log when they scored a late winner against the Birds at the Athlone Stadium on Wednesday evening.

The game was played in very windy conditions and both sides struggled to play the kind of attractive football that they are known for.

The Birds were unlucky to come away with nothing on the night, as Santos were by no means superior, and it was only the brilliance of home keeper Ryan Wuest which kept the Johannesburg team at bay.

Alfred Phiri and Goodman Mazibuko dominated proceedings in the middle of the park, but were just not able to supply their strikers with telling through balls.

In the second minute Thembile Kanono wasted the first chance of the game when he blasted his shot over the bar from close range after receiving a cross from Marawaan Bantam.

The same player displayed some brilliant skill when he found Lebohang Kukame with a defence splitting pass in the 11th minute.

Swallows had a chance in the 20th minute when Lungisani Ndlela flicked on to Edzai Kasinauyo, who in turn beat Duran Francis, but keeper Wuest did brilliantly to deny the Birds winger.

In the 50th minute Kanono picked out Bantam with a cross from the right, but after having done well to bring the ball down, the Santos playmaker shot over the bar from close range.

In the 82nd minute Mazibuko volleyed well from inside the area, but Wuest was there to make a diving save - the ball fell to Shaun Permall, who shot at target, but the home keeper again denied Swallows with a point blank save.

The match seemed to be heading for what would have been a fair reflection - a draw - until veteran striker Jean-Marc Ithier popped up right at the death to rocket the ball home from outside the box, giving his team their first win of the season.

The Birds now occupy sixth position on the Castle Premiership log, while Santos have moved up from 15th to 12th spot.

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