" />

CARLOS Alberto Parreira could be pardoned for repeating on Saturday: "We do not fear anyone but we respect them."

Indeed, Bafana had just earned loads more respect with a 1-0 victory over once European powerhouse Denmark at the Lucas Moripe Stadium in Atteridgeville, west of Pretoria.

It was not pretty but the game had its moments.

Katlego Mphela showed why he can be relied on for a goal when the opportunity arises. In fact, his winner could have made even a Ronaldo, Lionel Messi or Wayne Rooney gleeful.

Midfilelder Reneilwe Letsholonyane found space between the Danes and Mphela and placed the ball in front of them. Mphela zoomed past them like a race horse and from an acute angle, at top speed, unleashed an unstoppable low shot past goalkeeper Andersen Stephan for a classic winner for Parreira's boys.

The killer pass was another moment to savour as Letsholonyane showed - once again - that he is becoming just more than a creative wizard.

The Kaizer Chiefs man was here, there and everywhere on the park. Once dazzling three defenders with a body swerve and deft foot. It opened up a small hole on the left hand corner of the Danish goal. From 25 metres after that dribble, Letsholonyane curved a shot that went narrowly wide with the goalkeeper in no man's land.

Bafana goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune also came to the party at right moments. It was two minutes before fulltime when Mikkel Beckmann unleashed a shot from six metres that had goal written all over it. Somehow, Khune, in a flash, dived low to protect Bafana Bafana's lead. Bafana had met former president Nelson Mandela on Thursday.