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Sundowns’ Invincible Run Ends In Shocking Loss To Cape Town City

  • May 25, 2024
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Sundowns’ Invincible Run Ends In Shocking Loss To Cape Town City

Mamelodi Sundowns’ historic bid for an unbeaten DStv Premiership season came to a crashing halt after a surprise 1-0 defeat to Cape Town City at Loftus Versfeld Stadium on Saturday.

Coach Rulani Mokwena opted for a rotated lineup, handing starts to Bongani Zungu, Mothobi Mvala, Themba Zwane, Lebohang Maboe, Thapelo Morena, and teenager Siyabonga Mabena.

Despite dominating possession, Sundowns failed to convert early opportunities. Mosa Lebusa’s shot in the sevnenth minute was saved by veteran goalkeeper Darren Keet, while Tashreeq Mathews’ header and Maboe’s cross were thwarted by the City defense.

The Citizens suffered a setback around the half-hour mark when midfielder Khanya Leshabela limped off with a shoulder injury, forcing coach Eric Tinkler to substitute him with Relebogile Mokhuoune.

The second half continued with Sundowns pressing for a breakthrough. Mabena forced another save from Keet in the 50th minute, prompting Mokwena to introduce PSL Footballer of the Year nominee Teboho Mokoena and January signing Matias Esquivel for Tashreeq Mathews and Lebohang Maboe.

Against the run of play, City grabbed the lead on the hour mark. Jaedin Rhodes capitalized on a Mvala error, calmly slotting the ball past Ronwen Williams to break Sundowns’ record chase for fewest goals conceded in a season.

Despite substitutions and increased pressure, Sundowns couldn’t find an equalizer. Mokoena’s ambitious effort was saved by Keet, while Mendieta and Maema’s late combination ended with a wayward shot. Mabena also forced another save in stoppage time, but Keet remained unbeatable.

This defeat marks the first time Sundowns have lost a DStv Premiership match since September 2022, ending their dream of an invincible season. City, meanwhile, secure a crucial victory in their fight for a potential top-eight finish.

Article by Trevor Magoro

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