Spirited Showing Earns Downs Three Points At Home

Mamelodi Sundowns produced a dominant performance in their 2-1 win at home to move to 40 points at the top of the DStv Premiership table upon the final whistle at Loftus Versfeld Stadium.

The Brazilians started off strong with intent, Rushine De Reuck was first to challenge Oscarine Masuluke with a free header after receiving the ball from a corner kick. Masandawana were closing Baroka down and forcing errors from them as they struggled to cope with the intensity and energy the champions were showing. Bakgakga’s Sekela Sithole managed to go past Downs defense during Baroka’s first attack in the clash, his attempt at Denis Onyango took a deflection Bafana Ba Style regained possession.

Masandawana were finding some joy down the flanks, a period of dominance in ball possession played out for the majority of the first half leading up to frustration from the visiting side. Kermit Erasmus was amongst the players named in the starting line up for the evening, the 31-year-old forward tried his own luck in shooting but his shot went wide off target. Meanwhile forward and top goalscorer for the defending Champions, Peter Shalulile sustained a worrying injury that saw him substituted off as he was no longer able to continue, Pavol Safranko made his way on to the pitch to carry on with Masandawana’s striking department duties.

A scuffle between the visitors and Masandawana occurred in the last minutes of the first half after the referee’s decision for Downs to take a free kick following foul play on Erasmus. Both Dan Ndlovu of Bakgakga and Erasmus were given yellow cards, however a red card for Erasmus, followed shortly. With a man down, Bafana Ba Style restarted play with a free-kick taken by Lyle Lakay. His placement landed right in the Baroka penalty box and De Reuck challenged for the ball that eventually met Rivaldo Coetzee who sidefooted the ball into an unattended net, Masandawana went into the break with a 1-0 lead.

Within minutes of the resumption after the break, Themba Zwane had a guilt-edged opportunity as Safranko’s chest pass found the midfielder near the penalty spot, but his frail shot was easily saved. First-half goal from Coetzee put the Tshwane giants in control inside the opening half an hour and there was no way back for an out of luck Baroka. Bennet Bobete’s header on target went straight into the hands of Onyango and Downs were able to see out much of the half without any further damage and without any threat playing with only ten players.

Gradually, Baroka regained their composure and forced a series of corners to put Downs under pressure. Richard Mbulu scored from a tight angle to give his side an equalizer and a chance to come back into the contest.

Masandawana started to build up a head of steam, with Zwane and Sphelele Mkhulise working hard to find a way through the visitors defense. Just after 80 minutes of play, the contest effectively ended as Zwane shot a cracker home from Thapelo Morena’s assist. Any hope of a comeback was extinguished when substitute Mothobi Mvala and Aubrey Modiba made their way on to the pitch.

And for all of Masandawana’s positive work despite losing a man in the first half, the result takes them 40 points from their 16 games played in the DStv Premiership.

Bafana Ba Style will be in action again on Friday, 17 December against Orlando Pirates.

This is how we lined up: D. Onyango, A. Jali, T. Zwane, G. Kekana, L. Lakay (85′ Mvala), R.Coetzee, R. De Reuck, T. Morena, P. Shalulile (22′ Safranko), K. Erasmus, S. Mkhulise (85′ Modiba)

R. Goss, M. Mvala, B. Onyango, L. Kapinga, P. Safranko (75′ Nascimento), A. Modiba, S.Vilakazi, D. Lunga, R. Nascimento

4 Responses
  1. Ronnie Bothma

    Good win… We played a the Sundowns way for the first in a long time. Especially in the second half. Astonishingly after being a man down. Jali, Zwane were on fire. Jali player of the season so far.


    Unnecessary hard earned victory,God works in mysterious way,he will expose you for wrong doing.The coaches’ Favorited son and the weakest link in defense got injured against Royal AM and the team performed well after that and against Baroka another coaches’ favorite son got red card and the team started to create lots of scoring chances and eventually won the game.Romeo was given enough chance and he showed he doesn’t deserve to play for Downs,he can’t run,pass and the only thing he knows is back passes,one of which cost us a goal against Arrows in the 1st leg of MTN8,last night he got a lazy red card and put the team under an unnecessary pressure,he didn’t respect the yellow nation family and undermines the women.Every time when he’s partnering Shaulile,Shaulile struggles and end up not scoring .Don’t play players bcoz you love them,play them for their positive contribution to the team.Many players in our team have showed that they have reached their sell by dates but our coaches are in denial,players like Vila the last game he played he was always falling and handling the ball like he was playing rugby and also stopping after been dispossessed the ball.The biggest problem with our coaches is, they are allergic to young players and yet we are struggling against teams playing with young players like we did against Supersport’s multi diski team.Players like Mkuma and Makgalwa they are 100 times better than Erasmus,even Kapinga is way better than him,i watched Magerman against Pirates,he completely dominted their middle field,he plays like AJ or even better than him in terms of passing accuracy,AJ’s passing these days has lot of stray passes,their only problem under the current team is age.The work of o coach is to win games,build a team for the future by also promoting and playing young players.Our current technical team is only playing for a win only and Barcelona is currently suffering because they played with the same old players for a very long time,the time to introduce young players gradually is now when the likes Is AJ and Zwane are still at their peak so that the can learn from them,in fact we are the only team out of 16 teams that don’t utilize our development players.The current technical team are not as ambitious as President Dr Motsepe.When he took over Downs he said “i want to see Sundowns players dominating in the national team,sending players to the best leagues in Europe and also dominating in Africa.Is this technical team capable of doing that ? Sundowns is the only team in SA that has scouts in all 9 provinces,including our neighboring Countries scouting players from as early as age 8 to show the vision of the management regarding this giant of a team but that doesn’t reflect in our senior team.I think this technical team need to do some introspection about how thy are running the team.National team coach once said he doesn’t want his squad to be dominated by players who over age 30 because they are less hungry,he wants players who still aspires to play regularly in the squad and also playing abroad.

  3. JERO

    Hi Ronnie well said. It really pains me too, not having our players from our development to our Senior team. My question l have been asking myself is why Romeo has been given so much opportunities to play because he has been not contributing to the Team. Him as a striker is either a goal or assist we agree he can not do that every games. My question is why He was signed because KELETSO was there and compare the two KELETSO is more aggressive dribbler and Deadly finisher in the Box is the future of the team .
    Another one is Modiba which l think his game will not go to another level because we have Makume and Malebo Modise in that Position instead of grooming those 2 left footed players they sign him to come sit on the bench Malebo he did very well at Marit burg united last season is technically awaresome . We always send young players on loan but they never come back. To me it is a worst of money to have developement because is not contributing to the team and it gives a blank hope to those young boys. Because we have been running that development for many years.
    In the past we had abo fire Masilela. Michael Shata. Themba nguni many more from Development under 21 promoted to the first team under the current management we only had Late Madisha, Tau and Mkhulise whose in and out l wouldn’t surprise if He end up somewhere else. What surprises me Manqoba and Steve they used to play youngsters from Arrows and Celtics honestly that what it disappoint me and They will rather go sign youngsters from other teams and give them opportunity to play for Sundowns and ours they let them go with our culture and philosophy and our structure is the same from all the codes so l don’t understand why THEY ARE NOT PROMOTING THEM TO THE FIRST TEAM.
    Please Guys do not get me wrong our love our Coaches they are doing wonderful jobs but they should also look to the future of the Club too.
    We need to see 18. 19.20. Old wearing that yellow team. I am not saying the team should made of them but give them 10. 15 minutes when the team is winning so they can learn and get experience. We have 5 Subtutes atlist one or 2 should be young boy from development

  4. Downs4ever

    Exactly member,the coaches are doing a very good job now with regards to winning games.If you can check the biggest league in the world,France,EPL,Italy,Spain and Germany,we are number one in terms of points accumulated in 16 games,for that we say bravo.But the biggest challenge is development, we can’t always buy when we have talented players in our books and the best development in the land. We must gradually introduce them when the likes of Nascimento,Zwane and Jali are still performing well to guide them.Look at the likes of Foden,Smith Row,Saka,Greenwood,they were given 10 minutes when they were 1st introduced,now they are shining in their respective teams and they teams are guaranteed to play them at their best for the next ten years.You can’t expect the likes of Romeo,Sirinoh and Vila to play in the next season when they can’t last for 45 minutes now,Romeo never lasted for 45 minutes at Cape Town city and yet we bought him,what is the plan to mitigate that?.We can’t spend more money on development and also spend more than what we have already spent on development to buy players so of which we don’t need.Sometimes you would think that someone is working with this players’ agents to eat our money.We are a very big brand associated with international brands and let’s do things like wise.