By The Numbers: Wydad Casablanca 1-0 Mamelodi Sundowns

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Mamelodi Sundowns ended their Group A campaign with defeat to Wydad Casablanca, and Goals breaks down the clash that was in numbers

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    #10 Mamelodi Sundowns fail to assert their authority in Morocco

    Despite sealing progression to the Caf Champions League quarterfinals with a game to spare, Mamelodi Sundowns had an opportunity to seal top spot when they travelled to Morrocco to take on Wydad Casablanca on Saturday.

    However, it was a must-win for Wydad who were yet to confirm their passage into the next round, and along with the fact that the Tshwane giants had never beaten Wydad in their own backyard, it made for a rather difficult task. 

    As expected with the odds stacked against them and the hostile crowd cheering on the home side, Sundowns fell to a super-strike by Mohamed Nahiri.  

    Nonetheless, Goal looks at some interesting statistics following Sundowns' failure to come to the party in Rabat. 

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    #9 Cagey Affair

    With two quality sides on the field, the potential that they would cancel each other out was always there.

    Chances were certainly at a premium with the ball concentrated predominantly in the middle of the park. 

    Sundowns had just one shot on target and three off target the entire game, while Wydad enjoyed four with six going off target. 

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    #8 Wydad boss the game

    With a hostile atmosphere awaiting Sundowns, it was expected that they would see very little of the ball.

    Wydad completely bossed the possession statistics enjoying 59.3% of the ball to Sundowns' 40.7%.

    Worrying for Sundowns' technical team is that Wydad made 432 passes to the away side's 295. 

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    #7 Wydad enjoy the territorial advantage

    Sundowns were completely dominated by an organised Wydad outfit.

    In the first half Wydad had 68% territorial advantage to Sundowns' 32%, and while the Brazilians looked better in the second half, it was still the Morrocans who came out on top boasting 60% of the territorial advantage.  

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    #6 The Moroccans have the Midas touch

    Further illustrating Wydad's dominance is that they had 633 touches which was 131 more than Sundowns could muster [502].

    Of those touches, 77% were successful for the home team, while Sundowns had 71% touch success. 

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    #5 Sundowns kept negative

    Disappointing from Sundowns as they lacked their usual fluidness going forward.

    They were perhaps set out to defend as they only made six positive actions in the opposition box while Wydad made 23.

    The 2016 African champions also only managed two shots inside the opposition box with Wydad again coming out trumps, having enjoyed nine. 

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    #4 Wydad move forward

    Against Lobi Stars Sundowns utilised the long ball with aplomb, and again they attempted to use the tactic to get the better of the oppositions' defence. But it was Wydad who were more positive going forward, feeding 66 long balls for their attackers to run onto compared to Sundowns' 56. 

    Also, Wydad made 160 positive passes which were 28 more than Sundowns accumulated [132]. 

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    #3 Onyango the difference

    With Sundowns on the backfoot for most of the game, Denis Onyango had a busy afternoon. 

    He was ultimately the busier of the two shot-stoppers, making three telling saves and three catches.

    Wydad's Ahmed Tagnaouti made just one save all game. 

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    #2 Kekana v Haddad

    With the action concentrated in the middle of the park, Hlompho Kekana and Wydad's Ismail El Haddad put in an impressive shift.

    Both players made four successful tackles, more than any other player on the field. 

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    #1 Sundowns need to improve

    With Sundowns having booked their place into the next round, they will need to improve.

    Sundowns failed to test the oppositions' defence and this is something that Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane will need to work on should they hope to compete for their second star. 

    Meanwhile, Wydad showed that they remain a force to be reckoned with at home, and if any team dares to walk away from Morrocco with a win, they might need to think twice.