Basetsana need early goal, says cautious coach

COACH Augustine Makalakalane will vehemently disagree, but South Africa's Under-20 women's squad might as well start concentrating on their next hurdle in their World Cup qualifying round.

COACH Augustine Makalakalane will vehemently disagree, but South Africa's Under-20 women's squad might as well start concentrating on their next hurdle in their World Cup qualifying round.

But, of course, if the thorn in your side happens to be Nigeria, a little caution is probably called for.

Makalakalane and vice-captain Lerato Kgasago have emphasised the importance of a good display on Saturday, despite the comfortable 6-0 lead Basetsana are taking to Zambia tomorrow.

Kgasago said: "It is going to be a tough outing for us in unfamiliar conditions, with the home crowd doing all in their power to help their team. The hostility and intimidation is not going to put us off and we need to just put everything aside and finish them."

As one of only three experienced players - the others being Banyana Banyana's Chantelle Esau and Busisiswe Ndimeni - Kgasago has been at the heart of Makalakalane's successful run in this campaign.

Basetsana's route to Germany 2011 started off late last year with their 6-3 win over Reunion before following that up with the hammering they gave the Zambians in the first leg of this round on January 8 in Eldorado Park.

Still, Makalakalane would not rest on his laurels, calling up the memory of South Africa's abortive mission to qualify for this same tournament back in 2008.

"We were knocked out by the Democratic Republic of Congo on goal difference," Makalakalane said.

"When we won 3-1 at home everyone thought it was wonderful, but then we went on to lose 3-0 in Congo. So we learnt not to leave anything to chance. What we need would be an early goal, which will dampen their spirits while spurring us on," he said.

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