Mor Diouf scored a spectacular long-range goal two minutes from time to hand SuperSport United a hard-fought 1-0 victory over Pretoria rivals Mamelodi Sundowns in a Premiership clash at the Lucas Moripe Stadium in Atteridgeville this afternoon.
With time ticking down, Diouf picked up the ball deep inside his own half and looked to be clearing a Sundowns attack, but instead spotted goalkeeper Wayne Sandilands off his line and hit his effort goalwards, lofting over Sandilands’ desperate attempt to get back and slotting neatly into the bottom right corner, to secure maximum points for his side.
Earlier, Sundowns striker Nyasha Mushekwi missed a first-half penalty and an opportunity to secure the lead for the Brazilians in a game that they dominated and controlled.
Referee Robert Smith awarded Sundowns the spot-kick after goalkeeper Ronwen Williams brought down striker Anthony Laffor in the 42nd minute, but Mushekwi skied his effort.
Sundowns came close in the seventh minute when skipper Alje Schut got a foot to the ball from a free-kick, but missed narrowly. Williams then made a terrific dividing stop to deny Edward Mnqele six minutes later, when the striker glanced a corner goalwards.
Sundowns continued to dominate the opening 15 minutes and were nearly rewarded when Laffor was put through on goal by an accurate Hlompho Kekana pass, but Laffor was thwarted by Williams, who met the Liberian on the edge of his area and palmed the effort away for a corner.
Williams was called into action a third time after his defensive unit allowed Laffor to make a darting run into the United half, before the tall striker played in Mushekwi, who had only the keeper to beat. But he failed to get past the young shot-stopper, who made another solid advancing stop to deny the Brazilians the opener.
With the United defence in disarray and struggling to cope with a constant Sundowns onslaught, Smith pointed straight to the penalty spot after Williams brought down Laffor three minutes before the interval, but Mushekwi blasted over, much to the disgust of the travelling Sundowns supporters.
With seconds left before the break, Innocent Mdledle cleared a ball off the line after Williams was again beaten, this time by Mnqele.
Downs started the second half much the way they ended the first, with Richard Henyekane driving wide from a promising position on the edge of the area and in front of goal, before United’s half-time replacement Mark Haskins had a similar result with his right-footed effort which failed to test Sandilands.
Matsatsantsa continued to put pressure on Sundowns and were in with an opportunity in the 72nd minute, when Kermit Erasmus did well to beat his marker, turned on the ball and got a shot away at goal, but missed the target and sent the ball narrowly wide of Sandilands’ upright.
Gavin Hunt’s side missed again 9 minutes from time, after Sameegh Doutie combined well with Thabo Moloi, who delivered an accurate low cross into the area and found Atusaye Nyondo. The second half replacement failed to keep his effort down and chipped over the crossbar when he should have done better from close-range.
With both coaches looking content with the draw, Diouf made something out of nothing and sent the home crows into raptures with his audacious 70 meter attempt.