Mamelodi Sundowns head coach Manqoba Mngqithi has praised his second-half substitutes for adding a lot of value, saying they were instrumental in his side’s victory.
A brace from Peter Shalulile fired Masandawana to a 2-1 victory over Lidoda Duvha on Wednesday afternoon.
The Downs coaching staff, though, brought on Gaston Sirino after Ovidy Karuru handed Leopards the lead and he was involved when Shalulile levelled matters in the second half.
They were then dealt a blow after Mathobi Mvala received his marching orders in the 66th minute, with Andile Jali, Sphesihle Mkhulise and Lesedi Kapinga all coming on as Sundowns pushed for the winning goal which they got in stoppage time.
‘It was one of those matches where when we had all the numbers, we did not put the intensity that we put when we were a man short, it’s very strange,’ Mngqithi told SuperSport TV.
‘Because I believe first half we gave a little bit more, they gained confidence and momentum and started to think they can play the moment we started putting them under pressure and working very hard.
‘I must say the substitutes that we put in also added a lot of value to the guys that had already exhausted their legs, I believe “AJ” [Andile Jali], [Sphelele] Mkhulise did a very good account of themselves,’ he continued.
‘Gaston [Sirino], [Lesedi] Kapinga were also instrumental but Peter [Shalulile] was a tiger up top, fighting for every ball, you can never take that away.
‘The captain [Hlompho Kekana] playing as a six and also coming to play as a central defender at a later stage, fought very well with Mosa [Lebusa] and [Lebohang] Maboe,’ he added.
‘I must commend him, it’s very difficult to move from midfield into defence during the game and still be able to adapt quickly, so it was encouraging.’
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