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Bradley Carnell and Njabulo Blom Out of MLS Cup: A Round Up of South Africa’s Overseas Players
- Bradley Carnell and Njabulo Blom were involved in Game 2 of the MLS Cup playoffs
- They suffered defeat, ending Carnell and St Louis City's record-breaking debut season in the MLS
- Mihlali Mayambela, Percy Tau, and Pitso Mosimane all had winning weekends
The footballing ambassadors in foreign lands are always a source of pride.
Usually the key names on teamsheets, South Africa's stars were in action over the weekend. Percy Tau came on with five minutes to go with Al Ahly already 2-0 up, while Lyle Foster has been declared out of action until after the international break.
The biggest game involving South Africans featured MLS Cup silverware chasers, Bradley Carnell and Njabulo Blom.
St Louis City came into Game 2 needing a win to take it to a decider, but couldn't turn chances into goals.
Blom played all 90 minutes in the centre of midfield, and while they just edged possession and created 15 chances, they only managed two on target.
By contrast, Sporting Kansas City created eight chances, four of them on target and two of those in the back of the net.
Carnell will be disappointed that his Western Conference winners could not get past the first round of the playoffs against the team that finished eighth.
Blom did earn the assist for St Louis's consolation goal on the night, and the pair will be happy at having contributed to a record season for an expansion team.
Here is how a few other South Africans fared this past weekend:
1. Mihlali Mayambela
Aris Limassol are joint top of the Cypriot First Divison with APOEL after a 2-1 win against Nea Salamis.
Mayambela started for the fifth time this season to earn his ninth cap in all competitions, scoring twice in the process. The midfielder was substituted in the 65th minute with Limassol a goal down.
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Yannick Gomis saved the day with goals in the 68th and 90th minutes to keep pace with APOEL.
2. Lebo Mothiba
RC Strasbourg's player of the month for October came off the bench in the 68th minute to replace Angelo Gabriel in their 0-0 draw with Clermont Foot.
Mothiba made his 10th appearance of the season, but a red card for teammate Marvin Senaya eight minutes after Mothiba's introduction may have hampered his efforts to add to his three league goals this season.
3. Pitso Mosimane
Despite the constant rumours, things could be looking up for Mosimane at Al-Wahda. They recorded a second straight victory against bottom club Ajman in a 1-0 win.
The win takes Al-Wahda into fifth, five points off leaders Al-Wasl and Shabab Al-Ahli. The league takes an international break before Al Wahda face Emirates and Al-Nassr in games Mosimane will be expected to win.
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4. Thulani Serero
The former Ajax Amsterdam midfielder is also plying his trade in the UAE Pro League with Khor Fakkan Club.
Serero started for Khor Fakkan for the fourth time this season and was substituted off, also for the fourth time. According to Soccerway, he has played 261 uneventful minutes this season, with zero goals or assists.
Khor Fakkan lost the match 1-0 to Baniyas and now sit ninth on the table. Their next league match is after the international break on November 24 against lowly Ajman.
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Record breaking debut
Sports Brief previously reported on Bradley Carnell taking St Louis City to a continental competition.
Despite the playoff loss, St Louis City still qualify for the 2024 CONCACAF Champions Cup.
As many as 10 teams from the MLS can qualify through a multitude of qualifying routes.