Mogakolodi Ngele made his first ever start under caretaker coach Kaitano Tembo as Supersport United secured a crucial 1-0 win over Baroka FC, which ultimately preserved their Absa Premiership status. Supersport were in danger of being required to play in the PSL Promotion tournament against lower league teams to fight for survival but their slender victory has given them yet another season in the elite league.
Previously, Ngele had not started a game for Supersport since February, he had made only two substitute appearances since Tembo took over from Eric Tinkler in March. Ngele created the first real opportunity of the game but his effort did not threaten the Baroka FC goalkeeper, he then played a steady game before being substituted in the 60th minute.
Supersport won the match courtesy of a penalty, scored Aubrey Modiba. Their win saw them finish 11th on the log while Mpho Kgaswane’s Baroka finished 14th, just one place above the dreaded 15th spot which requires playoffs. Baroka started the season well and occupied the top four places in the first few weeks of the season and they were poised to qualify for the MTN 8 competition just a few weeks ago as they were closer to eighth place, however, they went on a downward spiral that saw them miss out.
Their early season form has proved to be vital after all, they accumulated enough points earlier in the season and this has helped them in the last few rounds. They ended the season just three points above playoffs bound Ajax Cape Town. Both Botswana players have survived relegation but the 2017/2018 season is the first in which a Motswana player has not finished in the top eight since 2005.