Sunday Nov 17, 2019. 08:00
South Africa will look to bounce back from defeat when they host Sudan for their second Group C match in the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers. The clash is set for the Orlando Stadium in Soweto on Sunday afternoon, kick-off at 15:00 CAT.
SA got off to a losing start in the qualifiers, succumbing 2-0 away to Ghana in Cape Coast on Thursday night. Bafana Bafana were left to rue several missed chances against the Black Stars, but at least the toughest match of the group (on paper, at least) is behind them.
“We are disappointed that we lost, it would have been better maybe if we had drawn, because we came here with a draw [before the match started],” explained coach Molefi Ntseki ahead of the clash with Sudan.
“Unfortunately for us, and fortunately for Ghana, they scored the two goals and if you saw how they were scored – it was more of power and strength, putting pressure on the ball and then getting the second goal. I think credit must be given to the players because I can’t fault their effort. They did all they had to do, unfortunately it was not our day.”
The result leaves South Africa in third place on the Group C standings, which are topped by Sudan. The Northeast African side opened their campaign in emphatic style, thrashing minnows Sao Tome & Principe 4-0 in Omdurman on Wednesday, with strikes from Ramadan Agab, Ahmed Hamid and Mohamed El Rasheed, as well as a Tackey Diogo own goal.
Under coach Zdravko Logarusic, the Falcons of Jediane have been slowly improving in recent times and they will come to Soweto confident that they can cause major troubles for the hosts and give a major boost to their hopes of qualifying for a first AFCON since 2012.
In head-to-head terms, South Africa and Sudan have met in just two previous matches: Bafana Bafana boast a 100 percent record, winning 3-0 in Khartoum in September 2014 and 2-1 in Durban in November 2014 in two AFCON qualifiers.