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Sundowns complete sweep of Ahly to establish dominance in CAFCL Group A

Peter Shalulile’s first half goal was the difference as South African champions Mamelodi Sundowns once again defeated Egypt’s Al Ahly 1-0 on Saturday in CAF Champions League action. Following their victory in Cairo in late February, Masandawana complete a sweep of the reigning CAFCL champions to move their lead in Group A to six points. Ahly remained in a three-way tie for second place with Sudanese sides Al-Hilal and Al-Merrikh on four points.

The hosts remained disciplined all match on the defensive end and looked to catch Ahly on the break with their speed on the wings. After a quiet opening fifteen minutes, Sundowns had their first real look at Ahly’s goal when a cross from left back Lyle Lakay picked out Haashim Domingo at the far post for a volley that was sliced wide.

The 22nd minute saw an effort from the edge of the area by Mothobi Mvala deflect off Ahly defender Yasser Ibrahim before clipping the crossbar on its way over. Ahly would not escape on the ensuing corner kick, however, as Lakay’s service found Shalulile at the far post for a volley off his thigh that beat Ahly keeper Mohamed El Shenawy to open the scoring.

The Ahly attack, prolific in their previous three games, went quiet throughout and struggled to create clear opportunities. The visitors had plenty of the ball but could not find any penetrating passes to unlock a Sundowns defense that refused to give anything away. Sundowns came closest to scoring in the second half when playmaker Themba Zwane dispossessed midfielder Amr El Solia and fed a perfect through ball to substitute Pavol Safranko, but the Slovakian was well denied from close range by El Shenawy.

Ahly had one last look in the 82nd minute courtesy of a well placed Ali Maâloul cross, but substitute striker Hossam Hassan was only to glance his open header far wide. Highlights of the match are below of an excellent win for Sundowns.

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