Thursday, 24 May, 2018

Barcelona in South Africa for Mandela Cup friendly with Sundowns

Lionel Messi made a late appearance as a substitute in Soweto Lionel Messi made a late appearance as a substitute in Soweto
Lucia Summers | 18 May, 2018, 12:16

Barcelona were outright winners on Wednesday evening, thumping Mamelodi Sundowns 3-1 at the FNB Stadium. He came on for the last 15 minutes, enough time for him to launch a stinging, long-range shot that goalkeeper Kennedy Mweene struggled to stop.

Lionel Messi and his Barcelona teammates touched down in South Africa on Wednesday morning, stoking excitement across the country's football fraternity ahead of a friendly match against Mamelodi Sundowns.

SA football lovers anticipated a less than star-studded Barcelona team sheet to contest the Nelson Mandela Centenary Cup encounter but were pleasantly surprised as the likes of Messi, Luis Suarez, Ousmane Dembélé and Philippe Coutinho touched down in Johannesburg.

Dembele, Suarez and Gomes all took advantage of defensive errors, with Dembele curling a left-foot shot into net in the third minute and Suarez doubling the lead in the 18th minute.

Turkey condemns Halkbank sentencing as political attack
Erdogan has said the case was founded on evidence fabricated by followers of US-based self-exilded Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen. The legal proceedings have caused further division between the USA and its North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally Turkey .

Messi was rested by manager Ernesto Valverde last weekend when Barcelona lost 5-4 to Levante in their penultimate La Liga match of the season, which saw ambitions of ending the campaign unbeaten go up in smoke.

Sundowns managed to pull a goal back through Sibusiso Vilakazi in the 76th minute.

Sundowns president Patrice Motsepe confirmed that his outfit will play hosts to the LaLiga champions just days after clinching their eighth PSL title.

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