Janine Van Wyk of South Africa
Monday Jun 17, 2019. 13:19
South Africa captain Janine van Wyk has promised a fighting performance from Banyana Banyana when they face Germany later today in what is likely to be their last match at the 2019 Women’s World Cup.
SA look set for early elimination on their tournament debut after suffering back-to-back defeats to Group B rivals Spain and China. They cannot finish in the top two and have only a slight chance of being one of the best third-placed teams.
Banyana have held their own in the matches against much higher-ranked sides, and will look to do so again when they face already-qualified Germany.
"We need to plan as if we are progressing to the next round," van Wyk told AFP.
"We can't be sitting back and saying it is over for us. We have done what we could. It wasn't enough but we keep going.
"We are not going to drop our heads now because the world is looking at us. We didn't come here to make up the numbers, so hopefully, everyone shakes this off."
Despite their losses, van Wyk feels they have not done badly in the competition, especially compared to a team like Thailand (which is ranked higher than SA) which lost 13-0 to the USA.
"This World Cup has come at the right time for us. We have worked extremely hard with some great players and talents coming through the ranks in South Africa," she continued.
"If we can get more clinical in front of goal, work on that more, then I think we can get better results from this, but we are not far off.
"You look at the Chinese team that is ranked 16th, Spain are ranked 13th, and you would have expected a USA-Thailand game, so I don't think we are far off in terms of matching.
"I think for the next World Cup, hopefully, we will qualify and get some wins in the bag.
"Of course you are disappointed with the results because any team here wants to win and progress to the next round and possibly lift the trophy, but for us, we need to be a little bit realistic about things."