Tuesday Sep 21, 2021. 13:00
South Africa national women’s team coach Desiree Ellis says she is happy with what she has seen from Banyana Banyana at the Aisha Buhari Cup thus far, but is challenging the players to up their performance even further.
Banyana, who will face host nation Nigeria at the Mobolaji Johnson Stadium in Lagos today, opened their campaign with an impressive 3-0 win over Ghana’s Black Queens last Friday, with goals from Hilda Magaia, Thembi Kgatlana and Sibulele Holweni.
“In the beginning I thought we were a bit rusty because we had not played since April,” Ellis said, as quoted by Times Live.
“We had not seen some of our players since 2019, but the other group has been in training.
“We created a lot of opportunities. We will always create a lot of opportunities. That’s who we are and if we don’t concede we have a chance of winning the game.”
Banyana are using the tournament as preparation for the Cosafa Cup in Port Elizabeth later this month and the upcoming Africa Women Cup of Nations qualifiers.
“We also showed we can play a bit of combination play and get players through and as the game got on, we got a bit better,” Ellis continued.
She added, “We know there is another game coming, so we have to ensure we manage ourselves very well.
“We made a few changes. Our team is very versatile and when we made changes we looked even better.
“We are very happy with the results but the performance still leaves room for improvement.”