Stunning long-range Mokoena free-kick earns SuperSport a draw against Sundowns

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Teboho Mokoena (Gallo Images)
Teboho Mokoena (Gallo Images)

A stunning long-range free-kick from Teboho Mokoena earned SuperSport United a 2-2 draw against DStv Premiership log leaders Mamelodi Sundowns in a thrilling Tshwane derby at Loftus Versfeld on Wednesday.

Masandawana conceded their first goals of the league campaign after going ten matches without seeing the ball cross their goal line.

The champions grabbed the lead in the first half through Neo Maema before Peter Shalulile added a second just after half-time.

A brave and spirited SuperSport outfit ensured that they didn't go down without a fight as goals from Gamphani Lungu and Mokoena secured a deserved point for Tembo Kaitano's charges.

Sundowns (27 points), who have a game in hand, remain undefeated and are now six points ahead of second-place Stellenbosch (21).

Meanwhile, the draw sees SuperSport (19) firmly hold onto fourth place ahead of the weekend matches.

Matsastansta were lucky not to walk away with the victory as they had the better chances in the first half against a dominant Sundowns outfit.

Thamsanqa Gabuza, one of the top form strikers in the league, rattled the upright in under 60 seconds after the whistle sounded for the first half.

But Sundowns responded with a lethal attack of their own two minutes later from a corner-kick as Peter Shalulile picked up a second ball with his striker's instinct poaching the effort narrowly wide of the target.

Pavol Safranko came close as Neo Maema whipped in a low cross from the left flank, but the Slovakian striker, who needed to find the target, dinked the ball wide.

SuperSport got the game's better chances in the first stanza, with Gabuza hitting the target again.

Gamphani Lungu rescued the ball from going out for a Sundowns goal kick. His early cross saw Gabuza rise and header the ball with finesse, beating Onyango, only for Andile Jali to clear the danger from the goal line.

Shalulile was the next perpetrator to hit the woodwork despite several SuperSport defenders marking the striker. He found enough time to pull the trigger, from 20 yards out, with goalkeeper Ronwen Williams only able to watch the ball hit the post to much relief.

With the looming half-time whistle approaching, Sundowns upped the tempo and immediately were rewarded.

Lyle Lakay dazzled through SuperSport's midfield and found Themba Zwane.

The veteran winger then laid a ball for an oncoming Maema, and he made no mistake with his curling strike, hitting the back of the net and giving Williams no chance to make a save.

The second half started could not have started any worse for SuperSport.

Jesse Donn lost possession of the ball in his half, with Safranko applying the necessary pressure on the youngster.

The Slovakian then played in Shalulile, who found Maema before making a run to receive the ball again. The Namibian striker timely put his laces through the ball with power, giving Sundowns a two-goal cushion at the perfect moment.

Sundowns have not conceded a goal in 10 league matches, and that record would end in the 70th minute.

Onyango, who has been immense all season for the club, had a lapse of concentration as a long-range strike from Jamie Webber rebounded off the chest of the goalkeeper with Lungu latching onto the second ball and placing it into the back of the net.

Sundowns could have added a third goal through Shalulile minutes later but instead conceded a second goal through a stunning 35-yard free-kick from Teboho Mokoena.

SuperSport probed in the dying minutes before full-time, and Bradley Grobler, who came off the bench, nearly clinched bragging rights for the visitors.

He looked to tap in from close range only for Mosa Lebusa to timely put a boot to clear the danger and help Sundowns hold on for a draw at the very least.

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Wed 15 Sep 21 18:00 PM (SAST)
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