Downs still rule the roost
Amakhosi prove no match for Mosimane’s charges as the stylish boys add another win to their tally
Earlier this week, Pitso Mosimane said the only team that could go pound for pound with his Mamelodi Sundowns was Orlando Pirates.
He was right. He was not being arrogant and back to his old ways, as many thought. Mosimane’s bold statement was justified, as Chiefs were no match for the Brazilians.
With the kind of performance Sundowns dished up here yesterday, Downs will be unstoppable, but only if they are consistent.
Playing with a star for the very first time, Bafana ba Style dominated the proceedings from the beginning to the end as they toyed with Amakhosi to earn their second win of the season.
The final score was not a true reflection of the game – the home side could have scored even more. They were also denied a clear penalty after Percy Tau was brought down in the box, but referee Daniel Bennett waved play on.
As for Chiefs, Steve Komphela is still trying to get his team together. He hasn’t yet made up his mind about his starting XI. Once again, he sent in a different team from the one that played in the game against Free State Stars a fortnight ago. In fact, Chiefs have not won a single game in three outings since they beat Ajax Cape Town last month.
They have dropped seven points after their last three games against Pirates, Baroka and the Brazilians.
Sundowns were worthy winners who showed from the onset that they wanted a victory. They made it look hard, even though, for them, it was as easy as they come.
Except for the two goals in the closing stages of the opening half, it was not a great game of football, particularly if you’re a Chiefs fan.
It wasn’t surprising that Amakhosi struggled to get into the game – they had too many defensive players on the pitch, which led to some confusion.
It was clear that Komphela’s ploy was first to defend and hit Downs on counterattacks. But this was never going to be easy against the marauding Brazilians, who were offensive from the word go.
Downs could have been few goals up in the opening stanza had it not been for poor decision-making in front of goals, especially by Anthony Laffor, who wasted a few chances.
Then – against the run of play – Chiefs took the lead through an unlikely hero – Ramahlwe Mphahlele – whose intended cross ended up in the back of the net.
Not letting grass grow under their feet, Downs were on the scoresheet a minute later when Tebogo Langerman beat master keeper Itumeleng Khune.
They again reached the back of the net in the 53rd minute with Sibusiso Vilakazi’s goal to put them ahead.
Sundowns clearly missed the services of Khama Billiat, who failed to recover from a groin injury in time for the game. His off-the-ball running and pace was the missing link for Downs. But, in the end, they did the job without the Zimbabwean international.
Unfortunately, the game had to be delayed for about 15 minutes to allow throngs of supporters to enter the venue. That said, it was worth the wait.
LIFT OFF Sundowns’ Wayne Arendse and Michelle Katsvairo of Kaizer Chiefs chase the ball at Loftus Versfeld yesterday