Chippa United claimed a shock 2-1 win over Mamelodi Sundowns in a Nedbank Cup last 32 tie played at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
The Chilli Boys scored a last-gasp winner in injury time to settle a highly-entertaining game against the Brazilians, with both teams committing to attacking football through the 90 minutes.
Chippa got off to a flying start and claimed the lead in just the third minute, with Rhulani Manzini scoring from a long range shot. The striker’s effort came after a free kick just outside the penalty area was tapped sideways by Kurt Lentjies, opening space for a shot on target.
The bullish forward nearly claimed a second – again from a free kick – in the 16th minute, powerfully driving a shot just wide of Denis Onyango’s right-hand upright.
Sundowns drew level just after the half-hour mark, just Phakamani Mahlambi controlling a ball over the top of the defence (with a hint of hand-ball) from Gaston Sirino before burying a shot into the bottom corner of the net to make it 1-1.
Just before the Brazilians equalised, the Chilli Boys came within inches of a second goal, as young midfielder Tercious Malepe fired off a superb long-range effort which had the beating of Onyango but not the crossbar.
The score was locked at 1-1 at halftime, while early in the second stanza Sundowns suffered an injury blow when Andile Jali was forced to leave the pitch. Veteran Hlompho Kekana came off the bench as a replacement.
The Brazilians should have claimed the lead 10 minutes after the restart, with a well-worked move down the right ending with Mahlambi sending a low shot toward goal, only to see it deflected wide by his own teammate, Themba Zwane.
On 59 minutes ‘Downs again poured forward in numbers and Sphelele Mkhulise powered an effort onto the crossbar. By this stage the team in yellow and blue were completely in charge of the game, forcing Chippa into a double change which saw the introduction of Ruzaigh Gamildien and Mark Mayambela.
The Chilli Boys’ changes saw the visitors’ momentum halted somewhat and the remainder of regulation time was spent with the teams trading opportunities – yet a lack of sharpness and execution in the final third meant an extra 30 minutes looked to be on the cards.
Yet in the fourth minute of injury time Chippa stole the match, with defender Frederic Nsabiyumva getting ahead of Onyango at a corner kick to head home the decisive goal and seal a shock result which puts Sundowns out of the competition.
Chippa United (1) 2 (R. Manzini 3’, Nsabiyumva 90+4’)
Mamelodi Sundowns (1) 1 (Mahlambi 32’)
Chippa United: Akpeyi, Macheke, Nsabiyumva, Shitolo, Tlolane, Rakhale (Mayambela 61’), Malepe, Komane, Mbenyane, Lentjies (Gamildien 61’), R. Manzini (L. Manzini 89’)
Mamelodi Sundowns: Onyango, Ngcongca, Coetzee, Lebusa, Langerman, Jali (Kekana 50’), Mohomi, Mkhulise, Zwane, Sirino, Mahlambi (Maboe 70’)