They needed three points to clinch the title, and Sundowns duly lived up to their nickname, “Bafana Ba Style”, as striker Anthony Laffor scored a hat trick in a 3-0 victory over Tuks in Pretoria.
Motsepe – who was on crutches – and coach Pitso Mosimane couldn’t contain their delight at the final whistle as Sundowns claimed their seventh Absa Premiership crown since the inception of the Premier Soccer League in 1996, the most by any team.
Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates are joint-second on the list with four championships each.
But the Amakhosi had to relinquish their trophy to Sundowns on Wednesday night, with Mosimane’s charges producing a master-class in killing off any hopes Tuks had of causing an upset.
They showed that they meant business from the start as classy midfielder Keagan Dolly took a quick free kick to split open the Tuks defence in the third minute, with Mzikayise Mashaba latching on to the pass inside the penalty area.
Mashaba kept his cool to square the ball for Liberian striker Laffor, who got a slight touch to it. But in a comical piece of play, Tuks defender Junior Sibande missed the ball entirely as he tried to clear it out of the six-yard box, and the ball bounced over his foot to give the visitors the lead.
Sundowns continued to terrorise Tuks down the left, with the pace of Zimbabwean forward Khama Billiat and SA Under-23 star Dolly caused the University of Pretoria’s defence endless nightmares.
Tuks managed to survive, but not for long, as Billiat made his way down the left flank once more. He jinked and left Tuks captain Willem Mwedihanga for dead with his speed and skill, and put in a well-weighted cross for Laffor to tap in after 20 minutes.
That was the end of the challenge from Shaun Bartlett’s Tuks side, although they showed good fight to restrict Masandawana to a 2-0 scoreline by halftime.
But on the hour mark, Man-of-the-Match Laffor completed his hat trick as Billiat once again created the opportunity as he dispossessed Partson Jaure on the edge of the Tuks box, and provided an ideal layoff for Laffor to lash home his third goal of the night.
Tuks goalkeeper Trystin Coetsee played a lone hand at times, and he pulled off at least three outstanding saves to stop a trademark Hlompho Kekana pile-driver, Dolly at close range and Billiat.
But it didn’t matter to Mosimane, as they held off the challenge of Wits to win the league by eight points and with two games to spare. Gavin Hunt’s Wits drew 2-2 with Mpumalanga Black Aces on Tuesday night to allow Sundowns the opportunity to finish things off against Tuks.
Mosimane also becomes the fifth coach to win two or more Premiership titles.
Now the next step for Motsepe’s band of superstars is to conquer the continent in the African Champions League.
In other Premiership games on the night, Kaizer Chiefs drew 0-0 with Bloemfontein Celtic, while Ajax Cape Town conceded a stoppage-time goal to finish with a 2-2 stalemate against Jomo Cosmos at Cape Town Stadium, despite a brace by striker Prince Nxumalo.
Original source: Sundowns rule the PSL!