Cape Town City go top as Manyama goal sinks champions Sundowns
It means a double this season for the new franchise over Sundowns, who City also beat in Pretoria in October.
City are top of the table for Friday night with SuperSport United still to play on Saturday and can now be considered a genuine title contenders.
Manyama finished off a characteristic swift counter attack movement to seal the game in the 59th minute but the winning margin might have been even more in a game full of chances and with plenty of entertainment for the 11,000-strong crowd.
Sundowns also had their chances but Percy Tau was largely anonymous and substitute Leonardo Castro is still waiting for his first goal of the season.
Lehlohonolo Majoro might have had an opening minute goal when City’s first attack saw a little chip pass into the penalty area from Thato Mokeke that brushed Majoro’s head as Sundowns’ goalkeeper Wayne Sandilands was caught in no man’s land. But Majoro did not get enough of a touch to direct it goalward and it went agonisingly wide.
City came out full of energy to dominate the early stages with half chances for Robyn Johannes and Manyama, who should have done better when Sundowns’ centre back Bangaly Soumahoro made an error.
Quick counter attacks from City kept Sundowns pinned back and Mokeke twice burst through, only to be let down by his own decision-making with his final touch.
But Sundowns began to win the midfield ball and take the game to their hosts and several clever passing moves set up chances in the latter stages of the first half.
There was consternation on the Sundowns bench in the 39th minute when Sibusiso Vilakazi took the ball away from teammate Tau when both were on goal and hit his shot wide but he was facing goal and Tau had his back to goal so it was the better option, let down by the accuracy of the shot.
A series of quick passes soon after saw Vilakazi punch his shot over the top of the City crossbar but the half closed with another counter from the hosts which Majoro fluffed after strong running and a good square pass from right back Thamsanqa Mkhize.
After the interval, the intensity of play and the pattern of counter attacks continued, eventually leading to the goal.
Sibusiso Masina had two good chances as the pace of City repeatedly caught Sundowns, who had a chance of their own when Vilakazi meekly hit from close range in the 57th minute.
Straight away City went down the other end in a swift counter punch that saw Majoro stretch to unlock the Sundowns’ centre back with a touch that put Manyama in the clear to finish with aplomb over Sandilands.
Manyama is now tie with Tendai Ndoro of Orlando Pirates in the league’s goal scoring charts.
Another minute later Shu-Aib Walters dropped the ball to allow Anthony Laffor a chance to equalise but Johannes came to the rescue on the line.
Castro had the ball in the net in the 66th minute but he was pulled back by the referee for a push.