Brilliant Tau Brace Sinks Stars11/Sep/2017 20:32
Two moments of brilliance from substitute Percy Tau saw the youngster score a brace to pave the way for a 2-1 victory for Mamelodi Sundowns over Free State Stars in the resumption of the Absa Premiership at Goble Park, Bethlehem.
Tau showed his class as he scored what coach Pitso Mosimane sang praises for in the post match interviews.
Coach Mosimane had to face choices in who to field, with some of his internationals returning from the FIFA week engagements for their countries with injuries while others had travelled long distances and perhaps needed a break.
Talisman Khama Billiat was injured during final preparations, while still others, for a total of eight players, were injured.
Mosimane also had to keep his eye on the CAF Champions League clash coming up on Sunday.
But the Tshwane giants showed their depth when Mosimane gave a first run for Ghanian Brimah Razak in goal, while Anele Ncongca got a run on right back and Algerian Fares Hachi on the right back.
Returning from a long absence Wayne Arendse was given the captain’s arm band for Hlompho Kekana, whose defensive midfield role was taken by Soumahoro Bangaly
The initial approach from the African champions seemed to be to play to Leonardo Castro, but long balls were intercepted by the Free State defence, where veteran Paulos Masehe stood firm.
As early as the second minute Sibusiso Vilakazi put through Castro but the Colombian was ruled offside.
The cheers went out loud when Oupa Manyisa had his first touch, and the former Orlando Pirates man kept the Stars defence on the hop in the middle of the park. He combined well with George Lebese and Anthony Laffor as they went in search of a goal.
Ngcongca made a run on the right, and knitted the ball to Castro who laid on for Vilakazi, whose attempt was cleared.
A moment of concentration lapse in the Sundowns defensive provided Stars their first real opportunity, but the Stars attackers shot wide with Razak wrong footed.
A minute later Laffor’s attempt was saved, but Stars seemed to turn on the pressure having grown in confidence.
A patient Sundowns built up attacks from those defensive positions, and Vilakazi was fouled. Laffor’s effort was saved.
A minute later Laffor was caught on the ankle as he played back from the byline. Vilakazi’s effort was saved, but Laffor limped on.
In the 28th minute Laffor was pulled off and Percy a Tau sent on.
A period of neat inter passing followed, as Stars sat back in defence. Sundowns tried to draw them out of their defensive positions.
Hachi as fouled on the line but Arendse’s header at the end of the set piece went over the crossbar .
On 42 minutes Castro flicked on for Vilakazi, whose effort was saved.
Then Tau turned on the magic, taking on the Stars defence, and was fouled on the eighteen line. The youngster known as “Di a rora” pulled himself up, and with Manyisa playing the decoy, Tau beat both the wall and the goalkeeper to give his side the lead .
The Tshwane Giants took the lead into the break.
It took Tau another five minutes into the second to deliver another brilliant effort. He won the ball, cut into the middle and positioned himself to net a scorcher into the roof of the net.
The coach then sent on former Stars hit man Thokozane Sekotlong and pulled off Castro.
Stars had an opportunity when Hachi was forced into handling the ball, but the effort did not bother Razak.
Lucky Mohomi came on for Manyisa in the 82ndminute. Razak was forced to to punch the ball away from a set piece, but he was only called to make a low dining save for the first time in the 85th minute.
Sekotlong the had the opportunity to put his name on the acore sheet as he dribbled past two defenders but he shot straight into the hands of the Stars goalie.
Stars then there everything at the Sundowns defence and Danie Venter fluffed it from an unmarked position.
A minute before the last of four minutes of referees optional time Stars finally broke the Sundowns defence when from a corner kick Sundowns tried to clear the lines but an unmarked Stars man who headed in to beat Razak.
Starting line up
Brimah Razak, Anele Ngconca, Fares Hachi, Wayne Arendse, Motjeka Madisha, Bangaly Soumahoro , Anthony Laffor, (Percy Tau) Sibusiso Vilakazi, Oupa Manyisa (Lucky Mohomi) George Lebese, Leonardo Castro (Thokozani Sekotlong).