Banyana must guard against complacency

Banyana Banyana players, led by captain Janine van Wyk, jog before training ahead of their Group B match of the Cup of Nations against Equatorial Guinea tonight. / Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix
Banyana Banyana players, led by captain Janine van Wyk, jog before training ahead of their Group B match of the Cup of Nations against Equatorial Guinea tonight. / Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix

It goes without saying that beating Nigeria in their opening match of the Africa Women's Cup of Nations (Afcon) massively boosted Banyana Banyana's confidence.

But SA must avoid complacency when they take on Equatorial Guinea in their second Group B encounter at the Cape Coast Stadium tonight (8.30pm SA time).

A win for Desiree Ellis's charges will secure them a berth in the semifinals of the tournament, before their ultimate group encounter against Zambia on Saturday.

Only the top two finishers in both groups advance to the last four. SA and Zambia are tied on three points in Group B, with Zambia leading by virtue of a superior goal difference after annihilating Equatorial Guinea 5-0 in their opener, while Banyana managed a 1-0 win over the Super Falcons.

Having initially been disqualified from the tournament before CAF reinstated them a week before the start of the women's Afcon in Ghana, Equatorial Guinea are arguably the least prepared team in this showpiece.

Their frailties appeared when Zambia thumped them.

While she insists they must not underestimate their opponents, Banyana's versatile midfielder Leandra Smeda feels they can capitalise on the central African nation's fragility tonight.

"We saw the game they [Equatorial Guinea] played against Zambia, you could see they are not well-prepared," said Smeda.

"We need to pounce on that. But this is football, anything can happen. We cannot go to the game relaxed."

After keeping a clean sheet against Nigeria, SA goalkeeper Kaylin Swart remains modest, shifting credit to her defenders.

Would you like to comment on this article or view other readers' comments? Register (it’s quick and free) or sign in now.

Speech Bubbles

Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.

X