Downs Dazzle In Opening Day Win In Cape Town

Mamelodi Sundowns opened their DStv Premiership campaign with a 2-0 victory against Cape Town City on Friday night.

The stage was set as the Premier Soccer League football launched for the 2022/23 season. The Brazilians graced Cape Town Stadium with their new signings, goalkeeper Ronwen Williams marked his name in the starting line up, meanwhile Sipho Mbule started off from the bench for the first time as a Sandawana. 

Downs’ intent matched the occasion early on, after five minutes Teboho Mokoena won a clever free kick after being fouled by Craig Martin. City’s goalkeeper Hugo Marques made a save and kept the score at a level, however Haashim Domingo of Sundowns came close to goal minutes later. Left winger Aubrey Modiba curled the ball a few meters outside the box where the ball met Domingo, the midfielder was unfortunate with his shot as it went over City’s goalposts. 

Both teams played at high intensity with pressure from both the attackers and defenders on the two sides for much of the opening moments of the clash. The Citizens pulled some strides in the 20th minute to put the backline under pressure, Khanyisa Mayo pulled off from Mosa Lebusa’s tackle and put in a cross in the 18 area box where Thabo Nodada was ready to put the ball behind the net but his efforts went past the side of Williams.

Themba Zwane who was leading the team as the captain in the battle looked deadly in counter attack, but Brice Ambina brought the midfielder down to stop Masandawana’s opportunity. Neo Maema and Domingo also had the opportunity to open the scoring charts before approaching the half hour mark, Maema’s shot took a deflection on his own player when the referee called for an offside, while Domingo’s attempt went off target as the player lost balance before shooting.

The home team found their groove in the last minutes of the first half, goal attempts from Luke Daniels’ header nearly caused a host for the defending Champions and Marc Van Heerden’s attempt was brilliantly saved by Williams. Bafana Ba Style ended the half with the most goal attempts and plenty of positive play in and around the final third as both teams went into the break with no goals scored.

There were no changes for either side at the break and it showed with a slower build up for the opening 10 minutes though Masandawana remained largely in control of proceedings. Combinations between Peter Shalulile and Mshishi caused a stir in City’s box before Shalulile was gunned down, the referee called for play to go on as the ball went out for a corner kick. 

The Brazilians’ first chance came after 55 minutes of play, Domingo was once again in the action of goal when he was obstructed to proceed into the box and the referee called for foul play. Modiba stepped up to face Marques, the left footer slotted the ball at the top corner to give the Tshwane visitors a lead in the battle. After three minutes of play, Zwane extended the lead to 2-0 when the goalkeeper came out to meet Domingo’s pass, but Mshishi’s final touch was enough to beat Marques.

The home team’s opportunity to pull one back fell at the feet of Mpho Makola who was given a set piece, but his efforts went off target. The intensity of the game picked at a high with City trying to come back into the game, but The Brazilians stood firm in defense. Williams made a dazzling save in the final 10 minutes of the match, a cross from Kajally Drammeh into the box was perfectly swept by the new Downs goalie. 

Maema’s pass made its way to Namibian international star Shalulile who was blocked from taking a shot. Sundowns collected maximum points at the Cape Town Stadium as the game concluded with a 2-0 win.

This is how we lined up:

  1. Williams, M. Lebusa, B. Onyango, K. Mudau (69′ Morena), T. Mokoena, N. Maema, A. Modiba (90′ Lakay), T. Kutumela, H. Domingo(71′ Mvala), T. Zwane (71′ Ralani), P. Shalulile (90′ Mbule)


  1. Onyango, T. Morena, R. De Reuck, S. Mbule, S. Mkhulise, A. Jali, B. Ralani, L. Lakay, M. Mvala


3 Responses
  1. Ronnie Bothma

    Very good win… This sets the tone for the season as a whole. Domingo, Modiba, Zwane and Mokoena had a very good game. It’s not arrogance, but I think we taking it again this season. Sad to see Lunga go out on loan. He never disappointed every time he put on the jersey last season… Perhaps Safranko could have gone… But anyway, I’ll give the technical the benefit of the doubt here.

  2. Zipho

    Good game by Domingo and Mokoena,da sad part is dat as soon as Maboe recovers he will walk straight into da team n Domingo will b dropped because of favouritism…….as for Kutumela, Im still wondering how he finished da game,he was disappointing as usual.Maboe,Kutumela n B Onyango r the coache’s favourites

  3. sbedula

    It was a good game indeed, the pitch was slippery but the boys manage to get three points. Cape Town city gives us tough game always so I’m happy we beat them

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