Result: Mamelodi Sundowns 3-1 Bloemfontein Celtic
Date: 17 August 2019
Venue: Lucas Moripe Stadium.
Mamelodi Sundowns progressed to the MTN8 semi-finals with a 3-1 come-from-behind victory over Bloemfontein Celtic at Lucas Moripe Stadium on Saturday.
The Brazilians had their first opening in the 14th minute. After a sustained period of possession, Hlompho Kekana's chipped ball over the top found Sibusiso Vilakazi, whose first-time volley sailed over the bar.
In the 22nd minute, Kekana hit the woodwork with a header from a Gaston Sirino corner after tireless work by Thapelo Morena to win the set-piece.
On the half-hour mark, Morena forced Jackson Mabokgwane in to tipping the ball around his near post with a powerful shot from an acute angle on the right-hand side.
Pitso Mosimane's side were spending most of their time camped in the Celtic half, knocking the ball around confidently and probing for openings. Such was Sundowns' dominance that they had already racked up eight corners by the 35th minute.
Three minutes into the second half, Vilakazi broke through the Celtic defence and cut inside before laying it off for Lebohang Maboe, whose shot was blocked inside the box.
Two minutes later, Sirino broke away from his man and got a snapshot off from range which Mabokgwane saved.
Celtic took a shock lead against the run of play in the 57th minute when Ndumiso Mabena fired a free-kick through the Downs' wall and into the left-hand corner.
Sundowns won a penalty in the 74th minute when Mzwanele Mahashe brought down Keletso Makgalwa in the box. Themba Zwane stepped up and fired the spot-kick in to the right-hand corner for the equaliser.
Lebusa made amends for his earlier miss when he headed home a Rivaldo Coetzee free-kick delivery at the near post in to the bottom right-hand corner for 2-1.
Phunya Sele Sele came agonisingly close to an equaliser with five minutes to go. Mabena cut in from the right-hand side on to his left-foot and struck a fierce drive towards goal which cannoned back off the crossbar. But Makgalwa put the nail in the coffin in the 89th minute when he cut in from the right on to his left foot and toe-poked the ball clinically in to the bottom left-hand corner for the killer blow.
Here's how the sides line up:
Sundowns: 14. Onyango, 27. Morena, 6. Arendse, 5. Lebusa, 4. Langerman, 40. Coetzee, 8. Kekana, 18. Zwane, 10. Sirino, 11. Vilakazi, 33. Maboe.
Subs: 30. Pieterse, 13. Mabunda, 15. Jali, 21. Mkhulise, 26. Makgalwa, 2. Madisha, 16. Ngcongca.
Celtic: 16. Mabokgwane, 15. Pfumidzai, 18. Mashikinya, 2. Tani, 35. Baloyi, 3. Mahashe, 11. Potsane, 24. Lingwati, 50. Masuku, 27. Tchilimbou.
Subs: 31. Chaine, 34. Fikizolo, 8. Phalane, 28. Khasipe, 13. Luthuli, 12. Meama, 7. Maloisane.