A last-minute winner from Marcelo Allende ensured that Mamelodi Sundowns emerged victorious over AmaZulu FC after an action-packed encounter at Loftus on Sunday afternoon.
The match started at a high tempo, with Masandawana setting up camp in the Usuthu half early on and dictating proceedings from there on with their passing and movement. After nearly a quarter of an hour with little action in front of goal The Brazilians had their first chance in front of goal when Teboho Mokoena played a through ball to Themba Zwane who charged down on goal, after beating the covering defenders Mshishi’s strike thundered off the crossbar in what would set the tone for a difficult time in front of goal for Downs.
The highlight of the first half came at the other end as goalkeeper Ronwen was called into action not once but twice as he made a double save from strikes from Gabadinho Mhango and Sandile Khumalo. The first half came to a close with the two sides on level terms and Downs heading into the changeroom without a shot on target.
The second half started in a similar vein to the first with Bafana Ba Style dominating proceedings however AmaZulu were determined to grow into the game. Khuliso Mudau made the block from the shot that came in from Keagan Buchanan before Ronwen was called into action a few minutes later to save another Buchanan effort.
The technical team looked to the bench early on and made a triple substitution early on in the half, with Neo Maema, Marcelo Allende and Thapelo Morena making their way onto the pitch. Morena was straight into the action as he had a chance seconds after coming on, with a glancing header that flashed across the face of goal.
The final fifteen minutes saw Masandawana hand a debut to new signing Terrence Mashigo as the coaches looked to make tactical tweaks to try and win the game. A flurry of chances followed, with Zwane and Morena both having shots saved by AmaZulu shot stopper Veli Mothwa.
With the game heading into additional time and destined for a stalemate, Chilean midfielder Allende found a pocket of space and fired towards the near post, beating Mothwa and claiming the winner in dramatic fashion in front of the home fans.
The win means Bafana Ba Style head into the upcoming international break at the top of the table.
How we lined up: Williams, De Reuck, Kekana, Mudau, Ngobeni, Jali, Mokoena (Maema) , Mbule(Allende), Saavedra (Morena), Zwane (Zungu), Shalulile
Subs: Pieterse, Morena, Mashego, Mailula, Allende, Mkhulise, Lebusa, Maema, Zungu