Result: Mamelodi Sundowns 1-1 Black Leopards
Date: 21 March 2021
Venue: Loftus Versfeld Stadium
Mamelodi Sundowns missed the chance to pull clear of the chasing pack after dropping points against Black Leopards on Sunday evening.
Sundowns made one change with Andile Jali coming in for Peter Shalulile. Leopards made five changes. Rodney Ramagalela, Kenneth Nthatheni, Sibusiso Khumalo, Mumuni Abubakar and Jonas Mendes were brought into the side.
The Brazilians took the lead with their first chance of the game. Lyle Lakay's corner to the near post was brilliantly glanced into the far corner by Mosa Lebusa as Lidoda Duvha were punished for their wastefulness.
Lakay then narrowly missed wide of the right-hand upright with a free-kick after Gaston Sirino had been fouled by Nthatheni on the edge of the box.
Nthatheni was then forced off with injury and replaced by Isaac Masia. The Brazilians came inches away from doubling the lead in the 33rd minute when Zwane played the one-two with Sirino on the left-hand side of the box and bent one to the far corner but it cannoned back off the crossbar and out.
Right on the stroke of half-time the visitors hit the bar. Karuru cut the ball back into the box for Khumalo, who had made a late run into the box and he fired on his left-foot from close range on the angle but it thundered against the crossbar and out.
Lebusa almost scored again in identical fashion to his first five minutes after the interval when he met Lakay's inswinger and glanced it towards the far post but this time Mendes made the save.
Jali released Sirino down the left-hand side and he cut inside before laying the ball off to Lebohang Maboe, whose effort went narrowly over the crossbar. Space then opened up for Siphelele Mkhulise 30 yards out and he lined up a shot that went narrowly over the bar.
The Brazilians were punished for not putting the game to bed as Lehlohonolo Seema's side equalised in the 80th minute. Captain Ramagalela got to the byline on the right-hand side and squared the ball back into the box for substitute Roderick Kabwe to backheel brilliantly into the far corner.
The men form Limpopo hung on for dear life in the final quarter of an hour to break a 10-match losing streak against the champions.
Here's how they started:
Sundowns: 14. Onyango, 5. Lebusa, 7. Lakay, 28. De Reuck, 41. Coetzee, 27. Morena, 15. Jali, 33. Maboe, 21. Mkhulise, 10. Sirino, 18. Zwane.
Subs: 20. Goss, 37. Modiba, 3. Nascimento, 23. Makgalwa, 40. Mvala, 25. Mudau, 32. Mkhuma, 9. Affonso, 23. Domingo.
Leopards: 30. Mendes, 27. Makobela, 33. Khumalo, 24. Nthatheni, 2. Gyimah, 5. Abubakar, 6. Mthethwa, 16. Ramagalela, 19. Karuru, Makgetlwa, Ononogbu.
Subs: 22. K. Ndlovu, 29. Masia, 43. Sampson, 25. Mokoena, 32. Mashoene, 14. Kabwe, 4. Khutlang, 17. Hlongwane, 30 Anas.
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