Johannesburg - Mamelodi Sundowns kept on track their uphill task of challenging log
leaders and defending champions Kaizer Chiefs for the PSL
title when they beat nemesis club Platinum Stars 3-1 at the Royal
Bafokeng Stadium on Tuesday.
An emotional Pitso Mosimane
afterwards revealed the frustrations Sundowns had experienced at the
hands of Stars in recent years - and the hard work he had put in to end
"It was really a personal challenge for me to win this game," he said.
spent hours watching videos of Stars' games to study their weaknesses
and devise the best tactics to end the run of unhappy results.
drummed these tactics into the minds of the players and they worked
perfectly. I believe we could have scored more goals -- maybe five or
six and it would not have flattered us."
Stars were a formidable combination, he said, after they had recently won the MTN8 and Telkom Cup competitions.
speaks for itself but everything has seemingly gone wrong in one way or
another for Sundowns when we have come up against them - and I was
determined it would not happen again."
obsession with beating Stars was so great that he castigated goalkeeper
Wayne Sandilands for suffering what appeared to be a serious ankle
injury in the closing stages.
Sundowns had already made their
mandatory three substitutions and had Sandilands not been able to
continue playing, the Brazilians would have needed to see the game out
with 10 men and an outfield player going into goal.
"I thought the old jinx was re-emerging," said Mosimane.
was not much time remaining, but you never know what could have
happened had Sandilands limped off and left us with 10 men. It was not
acceptable. But he stayed on and saw out the match and everything ended
The elusive victory edged second-placed Sundowns to within
three points of Chiefs, but having played an extra game as well they
remain distinct outsiders to gain their first PSL championship in eight
To keep the challenge alive and add to their achievements
as the most successful team since the formation of the PSL, Sundowns
will probably have to beat Tuks in the Pretoria derby at Loftus on
But the real crunch could emerge at FNB Stadium
the following Saturday, when Sundowns face Chiefs in what will be a
"must win" situation for them.
As for Stars, the defeat against Sundowns meant they missed the opportunity to leap-frog from eighth to fourth place on the log.
"We started on the wrong foot, allowed Sundowns to dominate the midfield and never fully recovered," said coach Allan Freese.
"We closed the gaps for the second half, but it proved too late."