Mamelodi Sundowns Ladies suffered a 4-0 defeat at the hands of ASFAR club in the CAF Women’s Champions League final on Sunday night. This meant Banyana Ba Style failed to retain the title they won last year, when it was established.
Downs conceded a penalty early in the first half, after the captain Zanele Nhlapo brought Zineb Redouani down in the box. Fatima Tagnout stepped up to open the scoring, putting the home side ahead.
At the half-hour mark, Sundowns’ Rhoda Mulaudzi received her marching orders following a poor challenge on Redouani. In the second half, Downs were further reduced to nine players after Nhlapo was booked for the second time.
ASFAR exploited their numerical advantage when moments later Ibtissam Jraidi bagged a hat-trick to ensure the victory for the hosts.
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Sundowns coach Jerry Shabalala says his team put maximum effort to come back in the game, but couldn’t because ASFAR were better on the day.
“I can’t falter my girls, we gave everything that we could but it’s the game of football. In the game of football, there are three results, either you win some, you lose some, or you draw some,” he said in the post-match interview.
“Unfortunately, today it wasn’t to be our day, and I would say we have lost with pride, we have lost to a better team, congratulations to them.
“We have learnt the hard way and we’ll go back and rectify whatever that we feel like we didn’t do right. As much as there was a lot expected of us to win, it’s sad to see us losing with this margin score.
Three weeks ago, Sundowns retained the Hollywood Bets Super League title with three games to spare, and Shabalala says it will be their consolation after failing to defend the Champions League.
“But not all is lost, we still have the league that we still need to go back home and finish. The good thing about it is we have already wrapped it up, and we’ll bounce back again, we were champions and we’ll bounce back strong as the champions.”