Brazilians outclass CRB in Algiers

Brazilians outclass CRB in Algiers
Peter Shalulile of Mamelodi Sundowns is congratulated for scoring his second and Mamelodi Sundowns third goal during the CAF Champions League 2022/23 Quarterfinal 1st leg match between CR Belouizdad and Mamelodi Sundowns held at Nelson Mandela Stadium in Algiers, Algeria on 22 April 2023 ©Djaffar Lakjal/BackpagePix

by Graeme Jackson

Saturday Apr 22, 2023. 23:07

Mamelodi Sundowns outclassed hosts CR Belouizdad 4-1 in the first leg of a CAF Champions League quarterfinal played at the Nelson Mandela Stadium in Algiers on Saturday night.

The Brazilians scored their goals via Peter Shalulile (two), Neo Maema and Cassius Mailula, while CRB’s consolation was netted by Miloud Rebiai, leaving the tie very much in favour of the South African champions.

Sundowns got off to a dream start and claimed the lead in just the sixth minute, as Peter Shalulile ghosted between two defenders to get on the end of Aubrey Modiba’s cross and head home from close range for 1-0.

The visitors doubled their advantage in the 20th minute – just as Belouizdad looked to be finding their feet – with Themba Zwane and Shalulile combining to tee up Neo Maema, who fired a low shot into the back of the net for 2-0.

The hosts gradually began to recover their composure and built some attacking pressure as the interval approached. They were rewarded in the third minute of injury time when Miloud Rebiai got on the end of a corner kick and nodded home to reduce the deficit to 2-1.

CRB made a double change at the start of the second half, introducing Ishak Boussouf and Housseyn Selmi, but it was ‘Downs who scored next, with Shalulile latching onto a loose ball and ruthlessly finding the bottom corner in the 51st minute to make it 3-1.

The Brazilians should have added to their lead just past the hour mark when Shalulile teed up Zwane in the middle of the penalty area, but the midfielder dragged his low shot wide with only the goalkeeper to beat.

On 81 minutes Sundowns threatened again, with Shalulile running onto a great through ball and rounding the goalkeeper, but his left-footed shot from a tight angle rebounded off the base of the near post.

Yet a fourth goal did arrive for the visitors in injury time, with a swift attacking move ending with goalkeeper Alexis Guendouz making a fine initial save, but Cassius Mailula swept home the rebound to complete a 4-1 triumph.

The return leg match will be held at Loftus Versfeld Stadium in Tshwane on Saturday 29 April. The aggregate winners will face either Simba SC (Tanzania) or Wydad Casablanca (Morocco) in the semifinals.

CR Belouizdad (1) 1 (Rebiai 45+3’)

Mamelodi Sundowns (2) 4 (Shalulile 6’ 51’, Maema 20’, Mailula 90+2’)

CRB: Guendouz, Laouafi, Bouchar, Keddad, Belkhiter (Bougherra 71’), Bouras, Draoui (Selmi 46’), Rebiai (Bakir 71’), Wamba (Reghba 84’), Belkhir (Boussouf 46’), Iwuala

Sundowns: Williams, Mudau, Boutouil, Mvala, Modiba, Morena (Nasir 72’), Mbule (Zungu 84’), Mokoena, Maema (Mkhulise 73’), Zwane (Mailula 73’), Shalulile (De Reuck 88’)

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