Sundowns win to increase lead
An own goal by Tshweu Mokoro was enough to help Mamelodi Sundowns maintain their advantage on top of the Absa Premiership table with a narrow 1-0 victory over AmaZulu in Durban on Wednesday.
Sundowns were the first to launch attacks to the hosts with Punch Masenamela’s dazzling overlapping runs looking dangerous early on during the early stages of this encounter.
The Brazilians continued with penetration although the hosts were also slightly getting into the game.
Teko Modise’s shot, first of the game in the 6th minute, sailed over the bar, and it was followed by AmaZulu’s first threatening attack which saw Mokoro producing a through ball to the on running Ayanda Dlamini but he arrived late when scoring looked prominent.
Carlington Nyadombo kept the Brazilian defence very busy as he looked very lively down the right flank.
As the game opened up, both sides had an equal share of the position, Stanley Kgatla remained the busiest man in the field as he had to deal with the silky passing of Sundowns orchestrated by Modise, Moriri and Ngubane.
As the clock winded down in the first half, most of the play had taken place at the heart of the field and the goalkeepers had less to do but were only called into action when tacking goal kicks.
In the second half, the side came out of the changing rooms with different tactics.
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Sundowns were the first to surge forward, once again with the blistering pace of Masenamela but AmaZulu’s defence were up to the standard and managed to clear.
Ayanda Dlamini’s cross was superbly cleared by Moriri which resulted in a corner that Senamela sent in only for Dlamini to head wide.
In the 50th minute, a cross by Themba Zwane was well matched by Katlego Mphela’s header from the centre of penalty area but a comfortable save by Tapuwa Kapini still kept the sides locked.
Usuthu responded well every time Downs attacked and in the 55th minute, Sangweni’s cross was well met by A. Dlamini’s volley but sailed just inches wide.
Debutant Anthony Laffor came on in the second half and sprinkled more life into the Down’s game, his speed and skill down the left flank meant more trouble for the Usuthu defence.
In the 79th minute, Themba Zwane’s cross was well headed by Lebohang Mokoena from the six yard box, and in his attempted clearance Mokoro poked the ball into his own net, 1-0.
After the goal, Sundowns looked revived as they threw waves of attack into the home side, with Laffor and Mokoena proving to be serious trouble down the flanks.
Moses Chavula should have leveled matters in the 82nd minute but was superbly denied by Moriri who put his body on the line to concede a corner which was then well collected by Sandilands.
Usuthu brought in the speedy Shipahu in attempts to counter the Sundowns defence but it all went in vein as the Brazilians went on to maintain their lead at the summit of the PSL log.
AmaZulu 0 (0)
Sundowns (0) 1 (Mokoro 79’ og)
AmaZulu: Kapini, Bukasa, Nyadombo, Sangweni, Mokoro, Chavula, Kgatla, Mbhele (Shipahu 81’) Senamela, G. Dlamini (Zwane 89’), A.Dlamini
Sundowns: Sandilands, Xulu, Mwanjale, Masenamela, Zwane, Mokoena, Pelembe (Laffor 65’), Modise, Moriri (Nyandoro 91), Ngubane, Mphela (Mushekwi 72’)