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Mamelodi Sundowns

Downs Move Three Points Clear, Sirino Returns!

DStv Premiership

Result: Baroka 0-2 Mamelodi Sundowns

Date: 09 January 2021

Venue: Peter Mokaba Stadium

Mamelodi Sundowns opened up a three-point lead at the top of the DStv Premiership standings with a 2-0 victory over Baroka FC on Saturday afternoon.

Themba Zwane and Denis Onyango were back in the side after missing the CAF Champions League encounter this week, while Rivaldo Coetzee joined Andile Jali in midfield.

Downs had the first attempt in the second minute. Ricardo Nascimento floated a long-range pass into the box for Aubrey Modiba, who chested the ball into the path of Peter Shalulile and he produced a fine first-time volley after letting the ball bounce which was pushed away to his right by a diving Oscarine Masuluke in the Bakgaga goal.

The visitors came the closest they had to scoring thus far in the 14th minute when Shalulile got on the end of a Lyle Lakay cross into the box and headed goalwards but unfortunately for the Namibian international his effort rebounded off the crossbar and back out.

The hosts had their first attempt in the 18th minute when Rivaldo Coetzee gave the ball away just in front of the back four with the ball being fed to Kgodiso Monamo, who fired his effort wide of the right-hand post from just outside of the box.

Sundowns and Shalulile in particular rattled the crossbar for the second match in a row in first-half stoppage time as the hosts escaped to the break without conceding by the skin of their teeth.

Ten minutes after the interval, Lakay got in on the overlap and fired away from an acute angle from the right-hand side with his effort being saved by the legs of Masuluke.

Lakay would not be denied soon afterwards. Downs won the free-kick on the edge of the box and Lakay used the wall as a shield, curling the ball around the group and into the far corner past an unsighted Masuluke, who was rooted to the spot.

Gaston Sirino made his long-awaited return to the Brazilians team when he replaced Modiba on the hour mark. And he forced Masuluke into having to tip the ball over the bar with a swerving effort soon afterwards.

Then, George Maluleka's half-volley brought an excellent save out of the Bakgaga shot-stopper once again. George Maluleka then curled a superb free-kick right on the edge of the box and it was heading for the top-right only for Masuluke to claw it away conce again.

However, moments later, Themba Zwane curled the ball into the far corner after being played in by Sirino to put the game to bed on the stroke of stoppage time.

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Here's how they started:

Baroka: 30. Masuluke, 35. Mphahlele, 3. Gebhardt, 18. Shozi, 35. Farmer, 17. Kambala, 20. Patjie, 14. Mosele, 28. Monama, 12. Mgaga, 10. Phiri Jr.

Subs: 1. Chipezeze, 2. Kgoetyane, 24. Jampies, 22. Mahlonoko, 29. Nkhona, 15. Mogale, 5. Makume, 16. Bowali, 36. Mathiba.

Sundowns: 14. D.Onyango, 27. Morena, 7. Lakay, 3. Nascimento, 6. B.Onyango, 40. Coetzee, 41. Mvala, 33. Maboe, 18. Zwane, Modiba, 37. Shalulile.

Subs: 1. Mweene, 15. Jali, 10. Sirino, 22. Kapinga, 12. Maluleka, 42. Mdhluli, 4. Langerman, 23. Makgalwa.

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