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Lucas Moripe Stadium
15/01/2011 18:00

Downs thump Maritzburg

Posted: 15 January 2011 Time: 20:06

Mamelodi Sundowns retained their place at the top of the Premiership table with a 3-0 win over Maritzburg United at the Lucas Masterpieces Moripe Stadium on Saturday evening.

Franklin Cale and Matthew Pattison made it 2-0, before Katlego Mphela converted a penalty for the third.

From the whistle, Sundowns employed a disciplined and highly tactical approach, rather than their usual flash and skill, but seemed to run out of ideas on entering their opponent’s danger area.

Lebohang Mokoena and Franklin Cale on the flanks launched their attacks, while Esrom Nyandoro and Matthew Pattison made sure that the Team of Choice were not given enough space to play in midfield.

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Sundowns threatened as early as the second minute, but after being set up by Katlego Mphela, Mabhuti Khenyeza directed his shot wide.

Maritzburg United also tried to put some moves together, trying to get that important opener but in the eighth and 11th minutes Diyo Sibisi was caught offside.

Despite enjoying a lot of possession in the first 15 minutes, Diyo Sibisi and Rudolph Bester failed to click as a unit and the supply from their midfield was often wasted.

Mokoena could only watch in disbelief after his volley flew over the bar in the 22nd minute.

A minute later he cleverly back-heeled a long ball from Cale to Mphela, but the Bafana Bafana’s striker’s goal-bound shot was deflected for a corner.

Sundowns looked like the first bet to score, but what followed was schoolboy errors and impatience in front of goal, and the score was 0-0 at half time.

In the second half, the Brazilians ran circles around their opponents, and in the 48th minute Shu-Aib Walters blocked a close range shot by Pattison to concede a corner before denying Esrom Nyandoro two minutes later.

Downs’ efforts were finally rewarded after Cale turned Elias Ngwepe upside down before unleashing a right footed bullet in the 52nd minute.

Pattison made it 2-0 in the 60th minute after being set up by Cale.

After the second goal, Sundowns surged forward, and were awarded a penalty after United Mor Diouf hand-balled while trying to block Khenyeza’s goal bound shot. Mphela sent Walters the wrong way to put the game beyond Maritzburg United’s reach.

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