A Kermit Erasmus header gave the Buccaneers the lead after an even opening. Monnapule Saleng, a winger for the Pirates, sprinted down the right flank and beat Aubreey Modiba to find Erasmus, who scored from close range.
After a tense first quarter, Downs had the most possession of the ball as they attempted to get back into the game. Teboho Mokoena attempted a long-range effort on goal for the home team, but Siyabangene Mpontshane of the Buccaneers made the save.
Both Gaston Sirino and Khuliso Mudau were unfortunate not to score an equalizer. Sirino drove forward and sent the ball into the penalty area in the direction of Marcelo Allende, but was unlucky to have the ball fall out of play. From the right side of the field, Mudau sent a cross into the box, but it was cleared by the defense.
With the stakes being so high for both teams, Bafana Ba Style worked tirelessly to regain their winning run. Themba Zwane was involved in a play with Mokoena, who attempted a long-range shot, but Mpontshane made another save.
As the first half drew to a close, the only thing separating the two teams was Erasmus’s goal. Downs struggled to withstand their opponents’ aggressive press throughout the match. Masandawana immediately substituted Neo Maema and Gift Motupa for Sphelele Mkhulise and Gaston Sirino five minutes into the second half.
Maema made an early impression as his attempt at goal came close to scoring despite the Pirates goalkeeper coming to a stop, but his shot went just wide of the goal posts. Mothobi Mvala was the next player to leave the field for Thapelo Morena as the home team attempted to mount a comeback.
Downs had the next opportunity, but Modiba’s pass into the penalty area hit the crossbar and went out. Allende’s shot was on target, but the Pirates goalkeeper came off his line to make a fantastic stop. As the game began to heat up and Sundowns began to create more opportunities, the Pirates goalkeeper came off his line to make a fine save.
Masandawana fell further behind when the Buccaneers scored their second goal of the day with less than 10 minutes remaining. After receiving a long pass from Zakhele Lepasa, Saleng scored a goal. Downs reformed defensively and immediately began to assault the hosts again after Motupa’s shot hit the top of the crossbar. The hero from Limpopo came close to scoring again with a header, but the goalkeeper was close enough to make a stop.
The referee added four extra minutes to the match, but it became worse for Bafana Ba Style when Saleng scored a third goal for Soweto by beating Rushine De Reuck at the back.
This is how we lined up: R. Williams,k. Mudau, R. De Reuck, A. Modiba, G. Kekana, M. Mvala (65′ Morena), T. Mokoena, S. Mkhulise (49′ Maema), T. Zwane ©, G. Sirino (49′ Motupa), M. Allende.
Subs: D. Onyango, T. Morena, C. Mailula, A. Jali, L. Maboe, H. Domingo, G. Motupa, M. Lebusa, N. Maema.
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