AmaZulu became the latest club to be prayed as Mamelodi Sundowns’ unstoppable start of the season continue without wilting on Wednesday.
Lucas Ribeiro Costa tucked away the only penalty in the first half against Usuthu at the wet day at King Zwelithini Stadium.
Mbongeni Gumede put his hands behind Peter Shalulile and referee Thabo Mkhabela had only one thing in mind to point to the spot kick, with Costa scoring his seventh league goal, now tide with Khanyusa Mayo of Cape Town City.
Sundowns are now on 30 pints after 10 matches, a record in the PSL to see the team win the opening 10 matches.
Usuthu thought they were rewarded with a goal in the 65th minute when Hendrick Ekstein blasted it at the far post, but he was flagged offside though it looked very close.
AmaZulu were noticeably without captain Veli Mothwa for unknown reasons, with Olwethu Mzimela given the start by coach Pablo Franco Martin in such a category A match against all conquering Sundowns, who came to this game having won the record nine opening matches.
The game was moved away from the Moses Mabhida Stadium due to the 2010 World Cup finals venue needed to be repaired as it visibly showed brown spots all over the pitch, which were evident when Usuthu lost 3-2 to TS Galaxy in the Carling Knockout semi-final on Sunday.
Also, stadium management had to close down the venue to prepare the pitch for close to two weeks as the final of the Carling Cup will take place there next weekend.
There is also a concert of BeBe Winans that is taking place on Saturday and preparations are already underway, forcing Martin to rue the game being played in Umlazi.
But, Sundowns, coming to Durban against Usuthu, this win saw them end the past three visits where they had failed to collect points, losing one and drawing the other two.
As expected, Sundowns controlled the game in Durban, trying to prise Usuthu wide open, who were rigid in the early stages of the game.
Usuthu were looking to catch Sundowns on a break because there was nothing else they could have done here.
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But Sundowns made their superiority count as Gumede held Shalulile at the back and referee Mkhabela pointed to the spot.
Costa sent Mzimela the wrong way in the 21st minute. Few minutes later, the two benches got at each other’s throat, with coach Rulani Mokwena having an exchanged of words with the coaching staff of Usuthu.
Some people at Sundowns feel Mokwena has received an unfair criticism indirectly directed by some coaches in the media, because of “jealous”.
However, there is a shared feeling that at some points Mokwena will break because he is human being after all.
Mzimela saw his hands viciously stung by Shalulile with a big save, as Sundowns were looking at extend their lead in the 32nd minute.
Just before half time, things started to open up for AmaZulu. Tshepang Morena had two shots – one saved by the relaxed Ronwen Williams and the other going wide.
Few minutes later, Morena had a better chance to score, but Mosa Lebusa produced a last ditch tackle to avert the danger inside the box.
But Usuthu improved in the second half and Williams was task to come out of his line to deny Moremi who was clean through on goal.
Usuthu were almost rewarded for their effort which they were better in the second half, but Ekstein was controversially flagged offside. They kept on coming to Sundowns’ box entries but they were not rewarded.