Sundowns edge Al Ahly to seal quarterfinal berth

Mamelodi Sundowns have qualified for the Caf Champions League quarterfinals after they beat Al Ahly 1-0 in a group A clash at the FNB Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

Peter Shalulile scored the only goal of the game in the 23rd minute to put the Brazilians in command of their group, having collected 10 points from four matches, with the Red Eagles trailing them by six points in second place.

Pitso Mosimane’s side dominated possession without creating too many chances as Sundowns looked to pick them off.

The hosts had the first sniff at goal on nine minutes when Mothobi Mvala warmed the gloves of Mohamed El Shenawy with a strike from the edge of the area. They threatened again seven minutes later as Haashim Domingo met Lyle Lakay’s cross at the back post to fire over the crossbar.

Percy Tau – back at his old stomping ground – then tested Kennedy Mweene with an effort from range on 20 minutes, but Masandawana would be celebrating the lead just three minutes later.

Shalulile was well placed to tap home at the back the post after the defence failed to deal with a corner.

The Namibian almost grabbed his second goal of the game on 28 minutes, although he wasn’t able to keep his shot down after connecting with Lakay’s cross.

The visitors finished the half strongly as they looked to strike back before the break, with Yasser Ibrahim steering a header wide of the left post from a 41st-minute free-kick before Mohamed Magdy dragged his shot to the left of the target after latching onto a through-ball from Aliou Dieng.

Downs had the first shot in anger after the restart as Lakay blazed over the crossbar from distance in the 56th minute, while Domingo did well to fashion a shooting chance for himself from inside the box seven minutes later, forcing El Shenawy into a save.

Pavol Safranko went close on 72 minutes with a left-footed strike from inside the box that rose just over the bar, and the Slovakian drew a sharp save out of El Shenawy from close range moments later after being played in by Themba Zwane.

Ahmed Abdelkader flashed a shot just wide of the right post from distance on 75 minutes and, back up at the other end, Teboho Mokoena tested El Shenawy with a dipping effort from a long way out in the 80th minute.

The Egyptian giants created two chances in quick succession soon afterwards, with Magdy drawing a routine save out of Mweene with a shot from outside the area before Hossam Hassan failed to hit the target with a header from Ali Maaloul’s cross.

Lakay went for the spectacular in the final minute as he had a pop from long range, but El Shenawy was equal to the task to keep the scoreline down to one goal.

Mamelodi Sundowns (1) 1 (Shalulile 23′)

Al Ahly 0

Mamelodi Sundowns: K. Mweene, K. Mudau (A. Modiba 46′), R. De Reuck, B. Onyango, L. Lakay, M. Mvala, A. Jali (T. Mokoena 67′), T. Morena, H. Domingo (P. Safranko 67′), T. Zwane (G. Kekana 84′), P. Shalulile (T. Kutumela 90′).

Al Ahly: M. El Shenawy, K. Fouad (T. Mohamed 38′), M. Abdelmonem (A. Ashraf 62′), Y. Ibrahim, A. Maaloul, A. Dieng (H. Hassan 75′), H. Fathi, P. Tau (A. Abdelkader 62′), M. Magdy, A. El Soleya, M. Sherif.

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