Buccaneers raid Brazilians for a point

football17 February 2024 20:33| © Backpage TXT

Mamelodi Sundowns dropped points for the third time in four games after they were held to a 1-1 draw by 10-man Orlando Pirates at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday.

Having seen SuperSport United and Cape Town City fail to win their respective matches in the last 24 hours, Rulani Mokwena's side weren't able to capitalise as the gap to their closest two rivals remained at nine points.

The Buccaneers are now winless in their last three outings and find themselves one point behind Stellenbosch (4th) and two ahead of arch-rivals Kaizer Chiefs (6th) in filth place.

Sundowns came into the encounter with the intent of keeping their unbeaten start to the season intact, while Pirates were looking to arrest a two-match losing streak which had left them 13 points adrift of the league summit.

The visitors made a bright start in Pretoria and carved out the first chance of the game after just three minutes when Makhehlene Makhaula advanced towards goal from deep before firing straight at Ronwen Williams.

Evidence Makgopa also drew a routine save out of Williams with a curler from out on the left in the 15th minute and the Bafana Bafana striker threatened again six minutes later with a shot from a tight angle that was well saved by his international teammate following good link-up play with Deon Hotto.


Williams had to be alert to deny Tapelo Xoki from a free-kick in the 28th minute before Masandawana finally fashioned their first chance on the half-hour mark as Peter Shalulile steered a header just wide of the goal from Marcelo Allende's cross.

It remained all square at the break and Bucs were quickly out of the blocks in the second half as Makgopa flicked a header straight into the clutches of Williams on 48 minutes.

But they suffered a setback six minutes later when Miguel Timm received his marching orders for a second yellow card, having already been booked early in the first half.

Sundowns would make their numerical advantage count 22 minutes later as Lucas Ribeiro won the ball back just outside the opposition box and Marcelo Allende tucked his shot into the bottom left corner of the net.

Their lead lasted a mere four minutes though, after the referee pointed to the spot for a foul on Tapelo Xoki inside the area and the defender took the penalty himself, blasting the ball down the middle with Williams committed to one side.

Shalulile had the best chance to win it soon afterwards when he got on the end of Gaston Sirino's cross, but the Namibian striker couldn't keep his header down as it sailed over the crossbar.

The Brazilians are next in action against TS Galaxy at the Mbombela Stadium on Wednesday, 6 March, while Pirates head to the Peter Mokaba Stadium for a clash with Polokwane City on Saturday, 2 March.

Mamelodi Sundowns (0) 1 (Allende 76')

Orlando Pirates (0) 1 (Xoki 80' PEN)

Mamelodi Sundowns: R. Williams, M. Lebusa, B. Aubaas (M. Esquivel 62'), A. Boutouil, T. Morena (G. Sirino 82'), M. Allende, S. Mkhulise (L. Nku 89'), D. Lunga, P. Shalulile, L. Ribeiro (J. Mendieta 89'), T. Lorch (S. Mbule 62').

Orlando Pirates: S. Chaine, T. Monyane (T. Lebitso 89'), T. Xoki, O. Ndah, I. Maela, M. Makhaula, M. Timm, M. Saleng (M. Pule 71'), P. Maswanganyi (N. Sibisi 90'), D. Hotto (N. Ndlondlo 59'), E. Makgopa (S. Marou 71').