Sundowns run riot in Tshwane derby
Clayton Daniels's own goal and a brace from Khama Billiat set Mamelodi Sundowns on course for a 5-0 win over SuperSport United in the Absa Premiership Tshwane derby on Thursday evening at Loftus Versfeld Stadium.
In the wake of the win, Sundowns now move to number four on the log table with 38 points from 20 matches.
Sundowns started like a house on fire as Percy Tau failed to convert two wonderful opportunities in the first five minutes coming from defence-splitting passes from the midfield, but United goalkeeper Riyaad Pieterse denied him on both occasions.
In the sixth minute, Sundowns continued to pile pressure and broke the deadlock through an own goal by Daniels.
As Tau tried to chip Pieterse, his attempt deflected off the defender to beat the oncoming keeper.
Despite the wet surface, the Brazilians skipper Hlompho Kekana nearly made it 2-0 in the 14th minute when his header hit the woodwork after a great cross from the right flank.
However, Zwane doubled Sundowns’ lead four minutes later when a cross fell for Tebogo Langerman and his shot was blocked by defender Morgan Gould, allowing Zwane to easily tap in from close range.
Just after the 25th minute, Mashaba made it 3-0 for the hosts after receiving a wonderful back heel from Billiat in the penalty area to beat Pieterse on his right post.
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United tried to control the midfield and create a chance to give keeper Denis Onyango some work, but they failed to penetrate their hosts.
However, with one minute to go to the tunnel, Billiat also wrote his name on the scoresheet with a powerful low shot from a distance to beat Pieterse on his right corner.
Amatsantsantsa A Pitori gave the Ugandan goalkeeper something to do in the second half as Onyango saved Daniels's header in the 48th minute.
The 55th minute saw Stuart Baxter's men improving in their attack as substitute Aubrey Modiba saw United's first shot on target safely gathered by Onyango.
United were caught napping in the 62nd minute when Langerman whipped in a beautiful cross from the left and Billiat completed his brace with a great finish, making it 5-0.
Reneilwe Letsholonyane took matters in his own hands as he unleashed a powerful shot from a distance in the 67th minute, but Onyango produced a fine save.
As they searched for a consolation goal, Daniels also came close to redeeming himself in the last six minutes when his free header went straight to Onyango from a well-taken set-piece through Modiba.
In the end, the African champions managed to break their six-match winless run in all competitions as they claimed victory.
The loss for the Nedbank Cup defending champions moves them to the fifth spot with 37 points from 22 matches.
Mamelodi Sundowns (4) 5 (Daniels 7' og, T. Zwane 18', Mashaba 26', Billiat 45’, 62')
SuperSport United 0
Mamelodi Sundowns: Onyango, Nascimento (Nthethe 46'), Madisha, Morena, Langerman, Mohomi, Kekana, Mashaba (Laffor 69'), Zwane, Billiat, Tau (Castro 79')
SuperSport United: Pieterse, Boxall, Daniels, Gould, Bhasera, Furman, Letsholonyane, Phala (Modiba 46'), Masango (Mokoena 46'), Brockie (Lakay 82', Nkhatha