Mamelodi Sundowns exited the Nedbank Cup after suffering a defeat to Tshakhuma FC in the semi-final at Loftus Versfeld on Sunday afternoon. This was the second time the two sides were meeting in April. The game went to extra time and was decided via the lottery of penalties after neither team breached the back of the net.
Coach Manqoba Mngqithi shared his thoughts on how the game panned out and said “I think we started the match very well, we anticipated that they might sit back and that they started with five at the back, which made our life a bit difficult. We kept pushing, I think we had better moments to score goals but credit must be given to Washington Arubi, he was outstanding, no wonder he was the man of the match.”
Going into the clash, Masandawana had to make last-minute changes to the side that beat Orlando Pirates in the last eight.
“We were unfortunate where we had to make changes to Mosa Lebusa, he had a knock in the last training session and Denis Onyango who had flu, lastly Lebo Maboe who was suspended. The players who played today made a good account for themselves. I think Washington stopped everything.”
The Brazilians now change their focus to the DStv Premiership as they will do battle with AmaZulu on Wednesday in what has become a top of the table clash following the resurgence of Usuthu under the stewardship of Benni McCarthy. As it stands the points difference at the top is six points as Masandawana look to continue their unbeaten streak in the league.
“We know what is going to happen in Durban, it is not going to be an easy one. We still have to fight. Our conditioning department is working very hard to make sure our players are in a good space to be able to come to the game against AmaZulu and deliver. Our players know they have a responsibility in all of these fixtures. We play these matches because of their success. They keep doing well and they must take the dose that comes with doing well”, concluded Coach Manqoba Mngqithi.