Cape Town City will play SuperSport United in the MTN8 final at the end of September after they beat Mamelodi Sundowns 4-2 on penalties following a bruising semifinal encounter at Lucas Moripe Stadium on Sunday.
It will be a repeat of last season’s final in which United beat City 4-2 on penalties in Durban and coach Benni McCarthy will be eyeing revenge and his first Cup success in his short managerial career.
"It was a tough one, I think the boys gave it their all. We were up against a resilient and strong Sundowns team," McCarthy said. "They probably had the better chances to kill it off but when we went 1-0 down, I said to the boys ‘we have nothing to lose, we keep on playing, we’ve been in these situations [before] and we can overturn it’," he told SuperSport TV.
After two legs, it was all-square at 1-1 on aggregate but City advanced after they showed nerves of steel to convert four penalties. City won the first leg 1-0 at home and Sundowns won the second leg by the same scoreline.
Sundowns opened the scoring after 26 minutes through Toni Silva who found the back of the net from close range for his first goal in the colours of the Brazilians.
For the opening goal, Themba Zwane unleashed a powerful shot that Peter Leeuwenburgh only managed to parry into the path of José Meza, who laid it to Silva to level the tie at 1-1 on aggregate.
It was the first time in the tournament that Leeuwenburgh had been beaten after Sundowns beat Maritzburg United 1-0 in the quarterfinal and the same score in the first leg against Sundowns.
For Sundowns, it was the first time they have scored a goal and won a match since they beat Golden Arrows 2-0 in the first round of this tournament almost a month ago.
Just after the hour mark, City’s midfielder Craig Martin ran almost the length of the field in a solo counter attack, but his left-foot shot from inside the area was saved by Downs goalkeeper Denis Onyango.
In the 76th minute, Zwane was stretchered off the field and replaced by Lyle Lakay. Zwane’s injury will have Bafana Bafana coach Stuart Baxter worried as he is selected for the Africa Nations Cup qualifier against Libya in Durban on Saturday.
Sundowns had to play the remaining 10 minutes with a limping Meza as coach Pitso Mosimane had made his three substitutions with Anthony Laffor, Lebohang Maboe and Lakay on for Leandro Sirino, Hlompho Kekana and Zwane, respectively.
Sundowns: Meza (scored), Silva (saved), Maboe (scored), Laffor (saved)
Cape Town City: Akosah-Bempah (scored), Modise (scored), Rusike (scored), Fielies (scored)