Sundowns get their Champions League campaign back on track with win over AS Togo-Port
Mamelodi Sundowns got their Caf Champions League campaign back on track with a hard fought 2-1 win over AS Togo Port at Lucas Moripe Stadium in Pretoria on Friday night.
Sundowns’ goals were scored by Leandro Sirino and Sibusiso Vilakazi in the first half where the Brazilians dominated possession and they should at least have taken one more goal to the half time break.
AS Port’s consolation goal was scored by substitute attacker Kokou Kloukpo three minutes from time after the Sundowns defence was caught napping.
Sundowns went into this match sitting bottom of Group C with two points from three matches following a shock 1-0 loss to Togo Port a fortnight ago but as a result of this narrow victory they have moved to second spot.
Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane will be an interested spectator on Saturday afternoon when Wydad Casablanca host Horoya FC in the other match of the group.
Mosimane will be hoping that Wydad get maximum points in Casablanca so that Sundowns stay second on the standings with two matches of the group remaining before the quarter-final stage.
Sundowns opened the scoring after eleven minutes through Sirino when he toe poked the ball inside the box past Togo Port advancing goalkeeper Jean-Rober Ayao after he was put through by Themba Zwane from the flank.
Five minutes later, Sirino turned provider as he turned after one Togo Port defender on the flank before delivering a low cross to Vilakazi who increased the lead with a clever back heel.
Jeremy Brockie was unlucky not to register his first official goal for Sundowns after 25 minutes as his close range shot rebounded off the outstretched legs of Ayao after Sirino supplied him with the ball inside the box.
Togo Port had a few chances in the match with the closest coming before the break through Paul Kove, whose close range effort was saved by Sundowns coach Dennis Onyango.
Brockie was unlucky after 65 minutes when his sliding shot could only managed the side netting after Vilakazi delivered a dangerous cross into the Togo Port penalty area.
In the closing stages, Mosimane introduced Venezuelan Jose Meza wearing the number ten jersey as they continued to dominate possession but failed to convert their chances with fullback Tebogo Lengerman missing twice from inviting positions.