For Banyana Banyana, the road to the Beijing Olympics next year will start with an emphatic away win against Equatorial Guinea on Sunday.
Banyana Banyana coach August Makalakalane made this clear yesterday before the team's departure to the west African country, where they will play in the first qualifier.
Makalakalane acknowledged the difficulties awaiting his charges in Malabo but said some necessary changes had been made.
"We know what we are up against. They are a robust, physical side and that required a change of tactics from us.
"Knowing them, they will come at us and try to intimidate and run us off the ball, but our strategy will be to use our defensive resources and not concede goals, while grabbing one or two away goals.
"That is why we have beefed up our defence by bringing in an extra defender, Simphiwe Dludlu, into the team.
"They are a formidable side and should be even more dangerous in their backyard," Makalakalane said, adding that the trip will give him an idea of how his team responds to a change of playing style.
Equatorial Guinea is not a completely unknown proposition for Banyana, who beat them 2-0 in the group stages of the African Women's Championships in Nigeria last year.
"That won't mean a thing to us on Sunday because they had two of their best players red-carded before they played us."