Mamelodi Sundowns showcased their class in a strong 3-0 victory over Stellenbosch FC in the DStv Premiership at Loftus Versfeld on Wednesday evening.
The champions got off to a flyer and immediately applied pressure to the Stellenbosch defence. Sundowns took the lead with around 90 seconds on the clock, as Neo Maema found himself in the right place to slot away a parried ball by the goalkeeper.
Downs found space in the wide areas of the pitch as Khuliso Mudau and Gaston Sirino made way in search of a second goal. The Brazilians bossed proceedings with 10 minutes on the clock.
As the 20th minute approached, the home team continued to have most of the ball while Stellenbosch were reduced to hitting their opponents on the counter. Downs were also quick to win the second ball and showed a fair bit of aggression in their game play.
Masandawana were forced into making a change halfway through the first 45, as Sirino was seen clutching his hamstring while going to the ground uncontested. Visibly distraught, the Uruguayan was then replaced by Thapelo Morena.
Downs came close to doubling their lead just after the half-hour mark, as Teboho Mokoena struck the crossbar with a clever effort on the edge of the visitors’ penalty area.
Peter Shalulile got his name on the scoresheet five minutes before the break, with Morena finding The Namibian with a ball that was fizzed into the area. The goal stemmed from a set-piece situation as the Western Cape outfit failed to keep Sundowns out of the danger zone.
Downs headed into the break with a comfortable 2-0 lead, while Stellenbosch struggled to worry the reigning league champions.
With the second 45 underway, Sundowns got the better of Stellenbosch and created numerous goal scoring opportunities.
The game went into a tacky period around the hour mark, with neither side able to hold onto the ball. Downs and Stellies then looked to their respective benches and made wholesale changes with the view of changing the game.
Downs tripled their lead 15 minutes from time courtesy of a calm finish inside the area by new Chilean recruit Marcelo Allende, who opened his account in South African football.
In seeing out the game, Sundowns preserved their clean sheet and collected maximum points against Stellenbosch FC.
Mamelodi Sundowns: (1) 3 (Maema 1’, Shalulile 40’, Allende 76’)
Stellenbosch FC: 0
Sundowns: Williams, Modiba (Lakay 75’), Mudau (Mbule 68’), Onyango, De Reuck, Mokoena, Jali (Ralani 75’), Maema, Zwane (Allende 68’), Sirino (Morena 25’), Shalulile
Stellenbosch: Stephens, De Goede, Basadien, Andries, van Rooyen (Boji 79’), Mthethwa, Mendieta (Likuta 65’), Adams, Letsoenyo, Mgaga (Titus 65’), van Wyk (Mngomezulu 65’)