Absa Premiership

Sundowns win penalty circus

2014-02-15 22:28
Thabo Nthethe (Gallo Images)
Pretoria - Mamelodi Sundowns scored one penalty and missed two as their Absa Premiership match against Ajax Cape Town ended 3-2 in favour of the home side at Loftus Stadium on Saturday evening.
Referee Victor Gomes was once again in the face of controversy as he handed five penalties which afforded the Brazilians to narrow the gap on league leaders Kaizer Chiefs to six points.
In the early stages of the game Pitso Mosimane’s side were dominating possession and it was Anssi Jaakkola who had his fare share of saves to make.
The goalkeeper pulled off a great save in the 14th minute when Bryce Moon supplied a cross into the box. Katlego Mashego got the better of Dominic Isaacs and his effort forced the Finn to make a save off the line.
Sundowns should have been 1-0 up in four minutes later when they were handed a penalty after Thulani Hlatswayo brought down Teko Modise in the box. The midfielder stood up to take the effort, but he couldn’t convert as the gloves of Jaakkola brilliantly denied him.
Thabo Nthethe did break the deadlock just before the half hour for the home side. The former Bloemfontein Celtic skipper rose above his marker and turned in a header from Modise’s free-kick to make it 1-0.
Five minutes later a second penalty was handed to the Brazilians after Granwald Scott was found guilty for an illegal challenge in the box. Katlego Mashego was the one to take and he did what his teammate couldn’t do and converted it to double Sundowns’ lead.
The Chloorkop side were doing all the attacking and they were then denied by the upright when Bongani Zungu’s snap-shot hit the woodwork, but the half ended with a penalty in favour of Ajax.
Nathan Paulse made it 2-1 heading into the interval with his calmly taken spot-kick in the 44th minute.
Penalty number four was awarded in favour of Sundowns in the 55th minute and it could have seen Sundowns restore their two-goal lead if it wasn’t for Mashego hitting the crossbar with his penalty.
Midway through the second-half Khama Billiat nearly got on the scoresheet against his former team when he lobbed in a shot which went narrowly wide of the post.
But with 15 minutes to go, Sundowns found the back of the net again and this time it was Anthony Laffor who beat the Ajax ‘keeper with a strike at the near post.
Hlatshwayo’s dramatic overhead kick was denied by the upright in the final minutes as Ajax fell to yet another defeat in the league, but first they reduced the deficit to 3-2.
Ajax were handed their second penalty due to a handling offence off a free-kick and it was the substitute Lance Davids who converted deep in stoppage time.
Mamelodi Sundowns

Mweene, Mashaba, Schut, Moon, Pelembe, Kekana (Mabunda 82’), Nthethe, Zungu, Modise, Billiat (Wome 86’), Mashego (Laffor 69’)
Ajax Cape Town

Jaakkola, Allie, Hlatshwayo, Isaacs, Jenniker, Scott (Davids 83’), Lark, Losper, Morris (Mzwakali 58’), Paulse (Rodgers 59’), Dolly

Read more on:    mamelodi sundowns  |  ajax cape town  |  psl  |  soccer

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