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bafana's pledge

By unknown | Oct 13, 2008 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Ramatsiyi Moholoa

Ramatsiyi Moholoa

Bafana Bafana players are worried about the team's plummeting ranking in the world, but the players have made it their business to drag the once-feared team out of the mud.

"It's a situation that we created for ourselves, so we have to get out of the mud by starting to win games," said captain Aaron "Mbazo" Mokoena yesterday.

Mokoena was speaking to Sowetan following their 1-0 win over Equatorial Guinea in their last 2010 Africa Cup of Nations in Malabo on Saturday, a meaningless encounter.

Also present at the game was Jacob Zuma, ANC president, who was in the country as part of his efforts to forge relationships with former liberation movements.

"As players, we talked about the issue of rankings. We all agree that it is unacceptable for us to be ranked 85th in the world," said Mokoena. "Even the coach [Joel Santana] has discussed the rankings with us that it is important that we are ranked as high as possible.

"The most important thing that we have to do as part of the campaign move up the rankings is to start winning. Consistency is critical in life. It is good that we have now won two games on the trot [against Malawi and Equatorial Guinea]. We are playing Ghana on Wednesday, so we have raised the hopes of South Africans with the two recent victories and we have to keep the winning momentum.

"Ghana are one of the top countries in the world, so it will be a tough one. The coach has started various combinations for the Confederations Cup.

"Safa have lined up a series of games in the build-up to the Confederations Cup, which will help us a great deal to assemble a competitive team."

Mokoena said the win over Equatorial Guinea was great, but we could not play great football because of the slippery and bumpy pitch.

"It was also great to see the ANC president coming to offer us words of encouragement before the game and congratulate us after the win. We appreciate the support from our leaders and community in general."

Santana, who was happy with the result, is retaining the same team for the big game against the Black Stars of Ghana.

"We faced a lot of odds but we didn't allow it to intimidate us. This win was especially sweet because it gave us three points away from home."

l Mokoena has also sent Bafana Bafana's condolences to their former captain, Lucas Radebe, following the death of his wife Feziwe at the weekend.

lFor more on 2010 World Cup qualifiers see pages 15 and 30


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