African Cup of Nations Qualifier 2017: South Africa Dealt Nigeria 2:0 blow
South Africa’s Bafana Bafana made a record first ever win over Nigeria on Saturday. The country won Nigeria two nil in the Africa Cup of Nations qualifier, 2017 in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria.
This is Bafana Bafana’s first win over Nigeria in competitive matches. The two countries had met on the pitch about 12 times previously. It was at the time that Bafana Bafana got its only victory in a friendly match about 13 years ago.
Tekelo Rantie headed South Africa in front after 54 minutes when he powered home a cross from the right past goalkeeper Daniel Akpeyi with the Nigeria defence guilty of ball watching.
Some horrible defending cost Nigeria the win and they will need to do better in the upcoming games to stand any chance of making it to the 2019 Afcon finals in Cameroon.
The South African coach said “We opened up the game in the first half but unfortunately we did not score. Beating Nigeria is very interesting.
“Nigeria is a very good side but my boys prevented them from scoring. We are trying to develop our boys and expose them,’’ he said.
South African striker, Tokelo Rantie, lived up to his billing as he scored in the 56th minute while Percy Tau who replaced Rantie, scored the second goal for his side in the 83rd minute.
The visitors sized up the Eagles in the first half, took advantage of their slower opponents in the second half of the match stringed crisp passes that sunk the Eagles in their backyard.
Moses Simon, Etebo Oghenekaro and Ndidi Wilfred were easily the best Eagles on the pitch on a day the team failed to fly.
Incidentally, Rantie was the player whose goals stopped the Nigeria senior male football team in the 2014 nation’s cup qualifier.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports Saturday’s defeat by South Africa was the first loss of Gernot Rohr as Super Eagles Head coach.
Rohr said after the match that his boys played well in the first half but were overpowered by the experience of the South Africans in the second half.
According to him, Nigeria had difficulties in finishing the match because “we made so many efforts in the first half while some of our players were tired in the second half.”
“We tried to open the wings and bring power to the team but unfortunately it did not yield fruits.
“I have trust in these boys because they played well in the first half but they could not score. We win and lose together.
“I think the next game with Cameroon will be very interesting. It will be better, much, much better,” he said.
Source: Premium Times