SUNDOWNS now the team to beat,
MAMELODI Sundowns ended 2015 on a BIG high!
They finished 2015 on top of the Absa Premiership after they dumped Orlando Pirates 2-0 at a sweltering Loftus Stadium yesterday to move to 26 points from 12 matches – the same as Bidvest Wits but the Brazilians have a better goal difference.
Downs were in a class of their own against a Pirates side that looked liked a shipwreck.
Yesterday’s win put the cherry on top of a brilliant week for Downs head coach Pitso Mosimane and his players who won the Telkom Knockout last Wednesday by beating Kaizer Chiefs 3-1 in Durban. Downs have sent out a warning to their rivals that their next target is the Premiership.Downs and Bucs go into the three-week festive season and Mosimane will enjoy a happy Christmas and New Year while Bucs head coach Eric Tinkler faces a bleak Christmas with his side rooted in 12th position with 11 points from 10 matches.
Downs resume their battle with Chiefs when they face them again when the league resumes on 9 January at the FNB Stadium while Bucs host Platinum Stars the same day at Orlando Stadium.
Mosimane kept faith with the players who won the Knockout by selecting the same starting line-up and it paid off.
Bucs looked as though they are still suffering from the hangover after losing to Tunisian giants Etoile du Sahel in the Caf Confederation Cup final earlier this month. Downs goal came in the 17th minute, seconds after Bucs striker Thamsanqa Gabuza failed to beat Downs keeper Denis Onyango in a one on one situation that proved costly and resulted in Gabuza being replaced at halftime by Thabo Rakhale. Onyango then set up Khama Billiat on the left and the speedy Zimbabwean midfielder laid off a superb pass to Leonardo Castro who scored with an easy tap in.
Downs wrapped it up when Billiat made it 2-0 in the 64th minute. Meanwhile University of Pretoria head coach Sammy Troughton days look to be numbered after SuperSport United defeated relegation threatened AmaTuks 2-0 at the Tuks Stadium yesterday to end the year joint bottom with Maritzburg United with six points. Maritzburg drew 1-1 against Platinum Stars at the Royal Bafokeng Sports Palace in yesterday’s other fixture.