Kaizer Chiefs and Bloemfontein Celtic played to a 1-1 draw at the Free State stadium in the first leg of the MTN 8 semi-final on Sunday afternoon.
Chiefs, who are defending champions, could have easily scored an early goal through George Lebese but his efforts were saved by Celtic keeper Patrick Tignyemb. Komphela’s men continued to put pressure on Celtic and it looked as if they were going to get an early lead judging from their sensational play.
The Soweto giants were stunned when Celtic’s loan debutant from Orlando Pirates, Helde Pelembe, scored a powerful shot from 28-yards to the top left corner of Itumeleng Khune’s goal. In the 40th minute, Chiefs could have easily made it 1-1 when referee Robert Smith gave them the advantage to score through a controversial penalty, where Bevan Fransman was said to have fouled striker Siphelele Mthembu with a high knee inside the box.
The spot kick was given to well experienced Bernard Parker, who blasted the ball over the crossbar.
The game went to half time 1-0 as Celtic managed to hang on to their lead.
In the second half Chiefs came all guns blazing and came close to scoring when Reneilwe Letsholonyane missed a glorious opportunity when he headed the ball over the top. In the 63rd minute Parker fired an unstoppable shot from 20-yards to make it 1-1 and make up for his missed penalty in the first half.
Celtic hung on as Chiefs pressed on but eventually the game ended 1-1 after 90 minutes.
Ajax Cape Town and Bidvest Wits also played to a 1-1 draw on Saturday. Chiefs and Celtic will meet on the 22nd of August in the decisive 2nd leg.