Absa Premiership

Sundowns close gap on Chiefs after thrashing AmaZulu

Pitso Mosimane (Gallo Images)
Pitso Mosimane (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Mamelodi Sundowns had too much firepower for Amazulu in Saturday night's Absa Premiership clash in Durban, running out comfortable 3-0 winners.

It took Pitso Mosimane's men just five minutes to break the deadlock at the Moses Mabhida Stadium, with the opening goal coming courtesy of Sibusiso Vilakazi.

A dangerous cross into the box was cleared by Mario Booysen for a corner, and while the initial ball was dealt with, Sundowns were given another opportunity to cross, allowing Hlompho Kekana to cushion a header down for Vilakazi, who took a touch before finishing with his left foot.

Four minutes later, Booysen had to make another crucial clearance in the box to prevent Vilakazi from getting onto the ball once again, although the former Sundowns man would leave the field shortly after following a nasty clash of heads.

Amazulu tried to find a way back into the match, with half chances falling to Sphesihle Maduna and Siyethemba Sithebe in reasonably quick succession, but neither was able to convert.

At the other end, a well-taken free kick from Tebogo Langerman forced a good save out of Amazulu keeper Neil Boshoff.

Sundowns continued to look the part and were awarded with their second goal of the evening shortly before half-time. Kekana picked out the run of Sphelele Mkhulise, and though he was dispossessed by Sibusiso Mabiliso inside the box, the ball rolled free to Themba Zwane, who stroked the ball home to make it 2-0.

The visitors should have had a third shortly after the break when Kekana was teed up by a brilliant back-flick from Mkhulise, but the Sundowns captain's powerful shot cannoned off the crossbar.

Three minutes later, they did have their third after Vilakazi was brought down by Mabiliso inside the box. Zwane stepped up to take the penalty, sending Boshoff the wrong way to make it 3-0.

Sundowns thought they should have had another penalty not long after when Vilakazi was brought down again, but the referee waved play on and Amazulu nearly scored at the other end after going on the counterattack, with Bonginkosi Ntuli lashing one just over the bar.

That was as close as Amazulu came to getting back into the game, however, as Sundowns saw out the remainder of the match with ease to secure all three points and move to within four of league leaders Kaizer Chiefs.