THE BREAKDOWN: What To Expect From Sundowns This Season
Previewing Mamelodi Sundowns' 2017/18 season
Now that the 2017/18 season is underway, we take a look at what little league action we’ve seen and identify what key areas of the game have changed and what has stayed the same at Mamelodi Sundowns.
Sundowns finished in second place last season and looked a team with all the credentials to retain their title. However, they ended up falling short to Bidvest Wits in the title race and will be hoping to improve this season. It is too early to tell and the loss against Polokwane City on matchday two may concern Pitso Mosimane, but what do the underlying stats say? Perhaps the opening games of the season will provide us with an early indication as to whether we can expect them to win back the title this season.
Click through the images above to see the changes in Mamelodi Sundowns’ team statistics so far, this season.
Sundowns scored the most goals and conceded the least in the league last season and have scored three so far while conceding two, so won’t be concerned with the final product of their efforts in their two games, despite the disappointment of recording a home loss against Polokwane City.
However, Sundowns’ possession figures thus far have been marginally better than last season’s, despite making fewer passes with relatively worse accuracy. What is incredibly encouraging though is that they have taken far more shots, compared to last season, averaging 17 per game, compared to 12.5 in 2016/17. However, their shot accuracy has decreased from 34% to 19.95%, which may indicate less efficiency in attack.
However, when it comes to retaining the ball, they have been worse off, winning less aerial and ground duels, albeit at a higher success rate for the latter. Their defence has also been less active, with just nine defensive actions per game, compared to 17.8 last season.
Therefore, while Sundowns still boasts some impressive statistics, it would appear that some areas need some refining, but you can be certain that the loss to Polokwane City will have alerted Pitso Mosimane to take action. If he should do so, Sundowns may once again return to the unstoppable force that lifted the trophy in 2015/16.
Do you think Sundowns will win the Absa Premiership title this season?