Bafana look to claim Leopards scalp

football11 September 2023 09:25| © Backpage TXT
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Bafana Bafana players at training © Gallo Images

South Africa will look to claim the scalp of DR Congo when the teams meet for an International Friendly at the Orlando Stadium in Soweto on the late afternoon of Tuesday 12 September 2023.

Kick-off is at 5pm CAT.

South Africa comes into the match on the back of a 0-0 draw at home to Namibia at the same Orlando Stadium this past Saturday afternoon.

It was a clash in which Bafana Bafana coach Hugo Broos opted for experimentation, making nine changes compared to the team’s last competitive match against Morocco in June, and as a result there was an understandable lack of attacking cohesion, though Lyle Foster and Monnapule Saleng did put in eye-catching if inconsistent performances.

“We said before we had to give chances to new players to prove themselves and show themselves. That was the most important goal, the result came second. But I would rather win than lose or play a draw,” said Broos.

The Belgian tactician added, “We were the better team. We had many chances and maybe that is why we played a draw, we didn’t use our chances which is a pity.

“In the first half we were searching a bit, but you have that when you have so many new players in the team, who are not used to playing together.

“We could have won against an opponent that was playing with a low block … they had chances, most of the time from our mistakes. But okay, it was what it was. I am happy with what I saw and that we did not lose.”

Broos has also noted that players who did not start against Namibia will be given a chance on Tuesday, meaning the likes of Ronwen Williams, Percy Tau and Zakhele Lepasa are expected to return as starters.

DR Congo, meanwhile, will be in a celebratory mood after they secured qualification for the next Africa Cup of Nations this past weekend.

The Leopards defeated Sudan 2-0 – via goals from Theo Bongonda and Fiston Mayele – in Kinshasa on Saturday evening to end top of Group I ahead of Mauritania, Gabon and Sudan.

In head-to-head stats, SA and DRC have met in four previous matches dating back to 1998. Bafana have claimed two wins compared to one for the Leopards, while one game has been drawn.

The teams last met in October 2005 in a World Cup qualifier in Durban which ended 2-2, with goals from Sibusiso Zuma (two), Tresor Mputu and Shabani Nonda.