Mamelodi Sundowns Orlando Pirates PSL report
Posted: 20 December 2015 Time: 15:03
Mamelodi Sundowns will go into 2016 as the country's top team following a 2-0 Absa Premiership win against Orlando Pirates at Loftus Stadium.
Goals in each half by Leonardo Castro and Khama Billiat capped a comfortable win for Pitso Mosimane’s men, who dominated with their pace and counter-attacks.
However, although the hosts were still in a celebratory mood after their Telkom Knockout Final win over Kaizer Chiefs on Wednesday night, they started on a low, losing the ball easily.
It was Pirates who threatened first through Menzi Mauku as he received a pass from Kermit Erasmus, but the South African Under-23 star shot over the bar.
Billiat hit the side of the net soon after, before setting up the opener five minutes later – ghosting pasting Rooi Mahamutsa before teeing up Castro for an easy finish.
This after Thamsanqa Gabuza missed a gilt-edged chance at the other end.
Pirates looked disjointed and Downshad a good chance to double their lead when Asavela Mbekile turned defence into attack, but his delayed pass to the unmarked Keagan Dolly was intercepted by Ayanda Gcaba.
In the dying stages of the first half Pirates pushed forward searching for a goal, but Gabuza's attempt was way off target, and a few minutes later Menzi Masuku’s shot went straight to Denis Onyango.
Sundowns hit the ground running after the break, and doubled their lead on 64 minutes – Castro with a great assist off the chest to play Billiat in, and he made no mitake in slotting past Siyabonga Mpontshane.
As Sundowns continued to pile pressure on their visitors, defender Wayne Arendse found himself unmarked in the box but he lacked composure, shooting way over from not too far out.
The Brazilians comfortable closed out the match to leapfrog Bidvest Wits into top spot. Pirates, however, remain rooted in 13th place with 11 points from 10 games.
HOME: Mamelodi Sundowns
Coach: Pitso Mosimane
AWAY: Orlando Pirates
Coach: Eric Tinkler