Truter: Usuthu matched Downs despite loss

Gabadihno Mhango of AmaZulu challenged by Khuliso Mudau of Mamelodi Sundowns during the DStv Premiership 2022/23 match between Mamelodi Sundowns and AmaZulu at Loftus Versfeld Stadium, in Pretoria on the 18 September 2022 ©Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

AmaZulu FC head coach Brandon Truter felt that his side matched Mamelodi Sundowns in their DStv Premiership encounter on Sunday.

The defending champions needed a stoppage-time goal from Marcelo Allende to secure a 1-0 win over Usuthu at the Loftus Versfeld Stadium in Pretoria.

“When it comes to Sundowns, you know what to expect. The only difference today was not much tactically but it was about the individual quality,” Truter said.

“They possess the best players in South Africa and some very good players from outside South Africa as well. So, I think that was the difference at the end of the day.

“Tactically we managed to go toe-to-toe. In the first half, the turnaround was that we had three shots on target which we should have turned into goals and some very good moments of set play as well and we could have gone into half-time maybe 1-0 or 2-0 up already.”

The 2019-20 National First Division (NFD) title-winning coach was left to rue his side’s missed chances against Masandawana.

“As is usually the case in this game, such failure to take advantage of opportunities – especially against a side of Sundowns’ quality – always proves costly. And Usuthu learned this the hard way,” he added.

“But then we get sucker punched with a late goal. It’s just one that’s hard in the gut to take. After that we had a good shout for a penalty which the referee didn’t give. Overall, it was a good game.”

AmaZulu will now take on Kaizer Chiefs in an MTN8 semi-final first-leg match at the FNB Stadium in Johannesburg on October 2.