Pitso Mosimane made his emotional return to Lucas Moripe Stadium with a 1-0 defeat against his former club SuperSport United for his second consecutive loss
United took the game to Sundowns, and came close to getting an opener when Sameehg Doutie’s second minute free-kick missed the target with Wayne Sandilands fully stretched. Sundowns then replied, using Anthony Laffor and Richard Henyekane’s pace on the flanks. The visitors then came close in the 13th minute, when Nyasha Mushekwi’s header was brilliantly saved by United keeper Ronwen Williams.
Williams then came to the rescue, after they were counter attacked by Sundowns in the 15th minute, but Laffor couldn’t get the ball passed the United keeper, who came off his line to deny Sundowns an opening goal. SuperSport were always out-numbered in the midfield, as they all pushed forward whenever they launched their attack, but Sundowns failed to use that to their advantage.
Mushekwi was then played through by Laffor in the 33rd minute, but the Zimbabwean striker failed to put the ball in the back of the net, with only the keeper to beat, in what was Williams third excellent save of the first half.
The SuperSport United keeper went from hero to villain with five minutes remaining, when he came a long way to bring Anthony Laffor down in the penalty box, and the referee didn’t hesitate to award a penalty to Sundowns. Mushekwi then stepped up and sent his penalty over the bar, and the score remained 0-0.
Sundowns didn’t hold back after missing the penalty, and this time it was Edward Manqele who managed to beat Williams, but his poor shot was cleared off the line by former Sundowns defender Innocent Mdledle, as the Tshwane rivals were goalless at half-time.
The second half got underway, but it was not as fast-moving as the first half was. Gavin Hunt immediately introduced captain Thabo September and Mark Haskins as he looked for fresh legs. However, Haskins didn’t combine well with Simba Sithole upfront, and Hunt then replaced Sithole with Atusaye Nyondo to put pressure on Sundowns defence.
The visitors continued to create goal scoring opportunities, but there were signs of fatigue on Henyekane who consistently lost possession, and Pitso Mosimane made a double substitution, with Mushekwi and Henyekane making way for Katlego Mphela and Themba Zwane respectively.
The game lost its tempo towards the end, and SuperSport United managed to keep Sundowns strikers very quiet until the final whistle. The magic moment came in the 88th minute when Mor Diouf unleashed a rocket from his own half to beat Wayne Sandilands who was caught off his line, and it was over for Sundowns, as United walked away with three points.