Saturday Oct 30, 2021. 21:58
Mamelodi Sundowns secured a 3-2 win over Cape Town City on penalties following a 1-1 draw in the 2021 MTN8 final at the Moses Mabhida Stadium on Saturday evening.
As a result, the Brazilians won the South African Top 8 trophy for the fourth time in the club’s history – winning the competition for the first time since 2007.
Although it was Masandawana, who fired the first shot on target with goalkeeper Hugo Marques denying Rivaldo Coetzee’s with a comfortable save, the Citizens created the better chances in the opening exchanges.
Mduduzi Mdantsane’s shot from close range went wide of the target and Fagrie Lakay was then let down by his poor first touch inside the box and keeper Denis Onyango gathered the ball inside the first 10 minutes of the game.
The Citizens were left to rue those missed chances in the 24th minute with Thapelo Morena marking his return to the starting line-up with a goal as he turned home a cross from Thabiso Kutumela to hand Sundowns 1-0 lead.
Masandawana then went to sleep at the back after scoring, but they were rescued by keeper Denis Onyango, who produced a wonderful save to deny Craig Martin and Mduduzi Mdantsane headed over the crossbar from the rebound.
Thamsanqa Mkhize should have at least tested Onyango in the 43rd minute after the City captain found himself unmarked inside the DStv Premiership champions’ box, but he placed his effort over the crossbar and the score was 1-0 to Sundowns half-time.
The Citizens applied some pressure on Masandawana inside the opening 10 minutes of the second-half and they created chances which saw Idumba Fasika’s fail to direct the ball home from close range and Onyango made a fine save to deny Ralani.
Sundowns were not looking to sit back and defend their narrow lead as Themba Zwane’s thunderous effort hit the crossbar on the hour-mark with Marques well beaten and the Angolan shot-stopper also made two great saves to deny Kermit Erasmus and Morena.
However, the Citizens continued to believe that they can level matters and they deservedly equalized when Ralani played a lovely pass for Lakay, who fired past Onyango with a low shot to make it 1-1 with 15 minutes left on the clock.
The goal ensured that the entertaining encounter ended in a 1-1 stalemate in regulation time and extra-time followed with the Citizens having shown character by fighting back to hold Masandawana in 90 minutes.
City were reduced to 10 players in the second-half of extra-time as Fasika received his second yellow card of the game and he was sent off, but the Mother City side stood firm at the back and the game went into a penalty shootout after a 1-1 draw.
Onyango proved to be the hero for Sundowns during the shootout as the former Uganda captain inspired the Tshwane giants to a 3-2 win on penalties after he saved five spot-kicks.
City (0) 1 (Lakay 75′)
Sundowns (1) 1 (Morena 24′)
City: Hugo, Mkhize, Fasika, Fielies, Dove, Mokeke (Mokhouane 95′), Nodada, Mdantsane (Makola 71′), Ralani (Mayo 105′), Martin (Mashego 72′), Lakay.
Sundowns: Onyango, Coetzee (Vilakazi 114′), Lebusa, Mudau (Maema 84′), Lakay (Domingo 114′), Morena (Modiba 90′), Kekana, Jali, Kutumela (Erasmus 46′), Zwane (Mkhulise 90′), Shalulile.
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