Red-hot Mhango fires Pirates past Sundowns

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  • Post published:January 15, 2020

In-form Gabadinho Mhango bagged his 11th Absa Premiership goal of the season to inspire Orlando Pirates to a 1-0 victory over Mamelodi Sundowns at the Orlando Stadium on Wednesday, reports DYLAN APPOLIS.

Gabadinho Mhango’s 11th Absa Premiership goal of the season guided Orlando Pirates to a 1-0 victory over Mamelodi Sundowns on Wednesday evening.

Josef Zinnbauer named a unchanged side to the one that claimed a 4-1 victory over Polokwane City in their previous league encounter.

Meanwhile, Pitso Mosimane was forced to make one change to his side that edged USM Alger in the Caf Champions League as Sphelele Mkhulise was named in the squad in place of the suspended Themba Zwane.

The Buccaneers had a chance to take an early lead when Motjeka Madisha lost possession of the ball but Luvuyo Memela failed to make the most of the defender’s error.

Sundowns should have taken the lead in the 16th minute when Gaston Sirino picked out Anele Ngcongca with a free kick, but the Sundowns defender hit the woodwork with his header.

Wayne Sandilands came to his side’s rescue a minute later when he denied Thapelo Morena’s effort before a Sirino rebound was blocked by the Pirates defenders.

Pirates eventually took the lead on the half-hour mark when Gabadinho Mhango slotted the ball past Denis Onyango after receiving a through-ball from Memela.

The Buccaneers held on to their one-goal lead over Sundowns as the game went into half time.

Mosimane made his first change of the game early in the second half when Tiyani Mabunda came on in place of Andile Jali.

At the other end, Zinnbauer made a change of his own when he brought on Thabiso Monyane to replace Memela.

Sirino should have levelled matters in the 61st minute but the attacker narrowly missed the target.

Mosimane made his second change of the game four minutes later when Mkhulise was taken off in place of Phakamani Mahlambi.

Sundowns nearly equalised in the 78th minute but Sirino blazed his venomous strike against the woodwork from range.

Zinnbauer opted to bring on a fresh pair of legs in the 86th minute when Tembinkosi Lorch was taken off to be replaced by Mthokozisi Dube.

Sundowns pressed forward in the closing stages but Pirates held on to their lead until the final whistle to claim all three points on home soil.