South Africa

Ribiero nets hat-trick as Sundowns rout hapless AmaZulu

A hat-trick by Lucas Ribeiro handed Mamelodi Sundowns a 3-0 win over AmaZulu in a DStv Premiership clash at Loftus Versfeld on Tuesday.

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The Brazilian winger now leads the goalscoring charts with 10 league goals in his debut season in South African top-flight football.

The visitors put up a brave fight in the first half to keep the defending champions at bay as the game went into the break deadlocked at 0-0.

Sundowns were also guilty of poor finishing in the final third. Whatever Rulani Mokwena said to his charges at half time clearly worked.

It only took three minutes after the restart for Ribeiro to put the Tshwane giants in front. He pounced on a handling error by Usuthu’s Olwethu Mzimela who parried Gaston Sirino’s shot into his path.

The 25-year-old got his second goal of the game nine minutes later with another good finish inside the box from a Lebohang Maboe pass.

AmaZulu threw caution to the wind after that and had a spell of good possession but Ronwen Williams was on hand to deny Augustine Mulenga.

Ribeiro was not done yet, he completed his hat-trick and put the game to bed with 13 minutes left on the clock. He found the bottom corner with a well-placed shot beyond the clutches of Mzimela following lovely threaded through ball by Bongani Zungu.

Masandawana are now 12 points clear at the top of the log after 16 round of matches. They have a game in hand over second-placed Cape Town City.

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The reigning champions’ unbeaten run now stretches to 16 games in a row as they edge closer to a seventh successive league title. They are now unbeaten in 40 league games in a run that stretches from last season.

Sundowns will now turn their focus to their last game of the Caf Champions League group stage against TP Mazembe on Saturday at the same venue.