Cape Town City edged out AmaZulu FC 2-1 in the MTN8 quarter-final match at the Moses Mabhida Stadium on Sunday evening.
As a result, Citizens joined Mamelodi Sundowns, Lamontville Golden Arrows, and Swallows FC in the semi-finals of the South African Top 8 tournament.
The Citizens started the match brightly with Terrence Mashego making some dangerous overlapping from the left flank and he ended up grabbing an early goal.
The 23-year-old full-back was allowed to burst into the Usuthu box and he fired a low shot past goalkeeper Veli Mothwa to make it 1-0 to City just eight minutes into the game.
Usuthu tried to respond with a goal with Luvuyo Memela and Augustine Mulenga, who both scored in AmaZulu’s 5-1 win over City in April this year, looking lively for the hosts.
However, the Citizens defence which was marshaled by Taariq Fielies looked solid and compact with the hosts’ unable to seriously test keeper Hugo Marques.
The score was 1-0 to City during the half-time break courtesy of Mashego’s first-ever goal for the Mother City outfit.
The hosts came back rejuvenated following their half-time team talk with coach Benni McCarthy and they managed to level matters nine minutes into the second half.
Keagan Buchanan played a low cross for Lehlohonolo Majoro, who guided the ball past Marques to make it 1-1 with the Citizens defence exposed.
McCarthy was forced to substituted an injured Buchanan and he introduced speedy winger Tshepang Moremi as the KwaZulu-Natal giants looked to take the lead for the first time on the night.
Usuthu’s free-kick specialist Tapelo Xoki had an opportunity to score after the hosts were awarded a free-kick in a promising area with five minutes left, but he was brilliantly denied by Marques.
Moremi then made a costly mistake as he lost possession in his own-half in the 89th minute and Mduduzi Mdantsane pounced and hit the back of the net with a curling effort.
The late goal sealed City’s 2-1 win over AmaZulu and the Citizens reached the semi-finals for the first time since they clinched the MTN8 title in 2018 under McCarthy.
AmaZulu (0) 1 (Majoro 54′)
City (1) 2 (Mashego 8′, Mdantsane 89′)
AmaZulu: Mothwa, Sikhakhane, Zulu, Xoki, Mgwazela, Makhaula, Sithebe, Buchanan (Moremi 61′), Majoro, Memela (Mthembu 84′), Mulenga (Moleko 72′).
City: Marques, Mkhize, Mashego, Mobara, Fielies, Mokeke, Martin (Morris 46′), Makola (Makola 58′), Mayo (Mokhouane 90’+2), Mdantsane (Mapfumo 90’+1), Ralani (Cupido 74′).