The nation will be united once more as Bafana Bafana gear up to face Ghana this Thursday. Molefi Ntseki’s side are level with the Black Stars on nine points after four matches, and with the two nations playing each other in Mzansi, surely Bafana Bafana would feel that they have the upper hand of topping the group.
Image Copyright – Steve Haag Sports
AFCON Qualifier | Thursday 25 March | FNB Stadium | 18:00
To Win Match
South Africa 13/10
Bafana Bafana find themselves in a fairly unusual, yet comfortable position going into their final two matches of the group stage campaign. Currently, its all in Bafana Bafana’s hands as they face Ghana, the team above them, and Sudan.
Percy Tau was the surprise inclusion after getting permission to join up with the national team from Brighton, who feel that the Lion of Judah will need the necessary game time, which has been limited since his move from Belgium.
With Tau having a point to prove, coupled with the fact that Ghana are missing some of their star players, Bafana Bafana will be confident of overcoming the odds to get the better of Ghana in our own backyard.
Goalkeepers: Veli Mothwa (AmaZulu FC), Ronwen Williams (SuperSport Utd), Itumeleng Khune (Kaizer Chiefs)
Defenders: Thibang Phete (OS Belenenses SAD, Portugal), Siyanda Xulu (Haopel Tel Aviv, Israel), Thulani Hlatshwayo (Orlando Pirates), Musa Lebusa (Mamelodi Sundowns), Innocent Maela (Orlando Pirates), Sfiso Hlanti (Swallows), Thapelo Morena (Mamelodi Sundowns), Craig Martin (Cape Town City)
Midfielders: Rivaldo Coetzee (Mamelodi Sundowns), Themba Zwane (Mamelodi Sundowns), Thulani Serero (Al Jazira FC, Abu Dhabi), Ben Motshwari (Orlando Pirates), Keagan Dolly (Montpellier FC, France), Percy Tau (Brighton and Hove Albion, England), Sipho Mbule (SuperSport United), Andile Jali (Mamelodi Sundowns), Luther Singh (Braga FC, Portugal), Dean Furman (Carlisle United, England), Vincent Pule (Orlando Pirates), Thabo Nodada (Cape Town City), Mothobi Mvala (Mamelodi Sundowns)
Forwards: Lebo Maboe (Mamelodi Sundowns), Thabiso Kutumela (Maritzburg United), Ruzaigh Gamildien (Swallows), Lyle Foster (Vitoria Guimaraes, Portugal)
Without doubt, this will not be the best Ghana side to travel to South Africa. Due to Covid restrictions, the Black Stars will be without the Ayew brothers and Thomas Partey for their trip to the FNB Stadium.
As much of as advantage as that may seem, perhaps it will work in Ghana’s favour the way they are so cheaply written off. Like some of our players, the personnel called up to the Ghanaian national team also have a point to prove, which makes them dangerous.
Having beaten Bafana Bafana in their previous leg, Ghana sure do have the winning formula to get the better of South Africa, but only time will tell if they’ll be able to do it without some of their key ingredients.
Goalkeepers: Richard Ofori (Orlando Pirates, South Africa), Razak Abalora (Asante Kotoko, Ghana), Eric Ofori Antwi (Medeama SC, Ghana), Danlad Ibrahim (Asante Kotoko, Ghana)
Defenders: Baba Abdul Rahman (PAOK, Greece), Benson Annan (MLK Zilina, Slovakia), Philemon Baffuor (Dreams FC, Ghana), Imoro Ibrahim (Asante Kotoko), Nicholas Opoku (Amiens SC, France), Ganiyu Ismael (Asante Kotoko, Ghana), Joseph Adjei (Legon Cities), Yussif Mubarik (Asante Kotoko)
Midfielders: Kudus Mohammed (Ajax Amsterdam, Holland), Mubarak Wakaso (Jiangsu Suning FC, China), Afriyie Acquah (Yeni Malatyaspor, Turkey), Emmanuel Lomotey (Amiens SC, France), Gladson Awako (Great Olympics, Ghana), Justice Blay (Medeama SC, Ghana), Kwame Afriyie Poku (Colchester United, England), Osman Bukari (Gent, Belgium), Joseph Esso (Dreams FC, Ghana)
Forwards: Emmanuel Boateng (Dalian Professional, China), Emmanuel Gyasi (Spezia, Italy), Kwame Opoku (Asante Kotoko, Ghana), John Antwi (Pyramids FC, Egypt), Kwasi Okyere Wriedt (Willem II, Holland), Caleb Ekuban (Trabzonspor, Turkey)
Prediction: South Africa (13/10)
The most Bafana Bafana thing to do in this case would be to fail to capitalize on the players Ghana are missing. However, with Tau being granted access to join up with the team, coupled with the fact that most of the players in our national team have CAF Champions League experience, we should be able to get the job done.
Written by Jesse Nagel