NEWS

Downs Look A Good Bet For Victory

21/Jun/2017 14:44

Last time out Mamelodi Sundowns were pipped at the post when Esperance scored a late penalty to earn the North Africans a 2-1 win in Atteridgeville.

On Wednesday, the big test for the Tshwane Giants will be whether they can bounce back to their best against Esperance on their home turf.

Nobody does their homework on tactics and understanding the opposition more thoroughly than coach Pitso Mosimane and his technical team of Manqoba Mngqithi and Rhulani Mokoena. Mosimane is known to sit through replays galore of his opposition, and the fact that they lost to Esperance, more through their own lack of aggression and taking their chances, would have given them the confidence that they can beat their opponents at home.

Sundowns were without some crucial players in that game, among them captain Hlompho Kekana and Khama Billiat, who played a critical role in getting the Tshwane Giants to the continental cup.

The Brazilians still have injury woes, with Ricardo Nascimento and Wayne Arendse still out, and Motjeka Madisha, who was stretchered off during the last encounter still doubtful.

Esperance went out for an early goal in Tshwane, but will likely be more cautious at home.  They will also be more confident, so Sundowns would need to establish early dominance to rattle them.

The focus for the visitors will be to put down markers.  They have done it before in the North African climate and environment. They have the resources which were not at their disposal in the first game, and more than anything they are full of confidence. 

In addition, they have had some rest following a run of over 56 games without a break, and this will have done much for their confidence to play their regular game.

If it is considered that Esperance scored their first goal while Thabo Nthete was being attended to off the pitch, thereby leaving a gap, and the second goal a fortuitous penalty given away in referee’s optional time, this shows that the Sundowns makeshift defence were able to hold the North Africans at bay.

Coach Mosimane will also be pleased with the form of his boys who played in the national team for Bafana Bafana. Tebogo Langerman, Sibusiso Vilakazi, Themba Zwane, Tiyani Mabunda and the mercurial Percy Tau made major contributions as Bafana Bafana beat the Super Eagles of Nigeria away. Tau scored, while Zwane rattled the upright twice and was unfortunate not to get onto the score sheet. 

Anthony Laffor missed his national team clash through injury, but has fully recovered, increasing the options for Mosimane as his combination with Thapelo Morena on the right has proved quite productive.

The option of playing crosses into the box will give both Leonardo Castro and Yannick Zakri the chances to finish off, while Kekana and Mabunda should be able to hold off Tunisian danger man Yassine Khamisse, who scored both goals in the Tshwane clash.

Sundowns may also opt to use Algerian left back Fares Hachi, who would be used to the environment in the region, and fully understands the approach to the game they may employ.

Although Esperance have not lost a CAF match at home since 2015, Mamelodi Sundowns are hungry for victory and must have a more than even chance to break yet another opponents unbeaten run like they did with AS Vita.

9 Responses to Downs Look A Good Bet For Victory

  1. Downs says:

    Haaaa!! Classy Mshishi will be turning those Tunisians inside out

  2. Downs says:

    If in my opinion our Downs can get Coetzee, bring back Shozi, Mkhulise, play Julies and release Mwenee for Ngobeni

  3. Dumza says:

    @dumza123 Sundowns experience will play a big role in this game. They are used to such pressure. We will beat them at their backyard. ‘Kabo Yellow, …

  4. Makhosonke says:

    Obvious we shall win this game no panic no pressure, they beat us by lucky last time.

  5. Bongani says:

    We support our lovey team and got full confidence so let’s win since it’s do or die and we’ve lost already hence nothing to lose now we going all out

  6. phoka says:

    With yannick and Leo and Vila behind zwane and tau on the sides sugar and Gonzalez on the centre we will kill the Tunis 4 -0

  7. I FULY AGREE WTH DOWNS ,MEMBER U A 100% WE NID 2 GIVE OUR YOUNGSTERS A CHANCE AND ALSO GET SIBIYA FRM ARROWS WHAT A BOY SO QUICK & ACCURATE, DEADLY FINISHER IN FRONT OF POLES TO OUR RESPECTIVE COACHES PLS GENTLEMAN LETS GIVE OUR GENERAL TEKO MODISE A NEW CONTRACT HE’S STILL THE BEST PASSER OF THE BALL HE IS OUR LEGEND LETS NOT LOOSE HIM LIKE WE DID WTH SUPRICE MORIRI LASTLY ALL THE BEST BOYS IN TUNISIA, TRULY THE SKY IS THE LIMIT. FRM SAM Z MAHLASE

  8. Nw says:

    A point away will do i guess. Percy should have buried that sitter. He needs to work on his decision making and finishing, he needs to be patient with himself.

    Kekana was rusty, he did’nt look fit, we lost the ball and did’nt win it either in the midfield, Villa later on really helped in that midfield. We must work hard in our next 2games. hopefully Billiat will be back.

    Clearly the match officials were not on our side. we are lucky Esperance did’nt get a penalty.

    KBY.

  9. Shingirayi Zimunya says:

    I am extremely proud of Bangaly Soumahoro, he held his own defensively. We must give credit. We need Billiat back now because of fluidity problems. I feel that Mshishi, Zakri and Tau play better when Billiat is there because of his passing game. I also think that we could have won if Mshishi had decided to be selfish and had insteadtaken another touch instead of passing the ball to Tau. Anyway we will come back stronger, hopefully by 1 July all our players are match fit and hungry. We must moer St George and go top of the log.