Mamelodi Sundowns shot stopper, Andile Dlamini believes the standard of goalkeeping in women’s football is on the rise in Africa.
Fresh from being instrumental in her side’s third successive qualification to the CAF Women’s Champions League after winning the regional COSAFA title without a single loss, Dlamini is looking forward to adding another continental accolade to her growing list of achievements at this year’s CAF Women’s Champions League, Cote d’Ivoire 2023.
Dlamini, who is at the peak of her career at age 31 was speaking to CAFOnline from the USA where South Africa is preparing to face the former FIFA Women’s World Cup champions in an international friendly match on Thursday, 21 September.
“I really think the standard of women’s football goalkeeping is improving in Africa. We just need more young female goalkeepers to follow in our foot-steps so that our department can be even more solid” said the shot-stopper.
Voted best goalkeeper at the TotalEnergies CAF Women’s Africa Cup of Nations, Morocco 2022 for a keeping four clean sheets enroute to Banyana Banyana first ever continental title, “Sticks” as the lanky shot stopper is affectionately known also touched on the upcoming CAF Women’s Champions League – saying that it Sundowns with the opportunity to fight for the trophy again.
“It means the world to us as a team. We have another opportunity to go fight for the trophy, we look forward to the journey in Cote d’ivoire”
“We play each and every game with hopes of wanting to win it. We played the CAF qualifiers hoping to win it and we did. We take one game at a time and while we do so, we focus on the present. We will focus on CAF when we channel there for now, it is about getting the mindset right, converting the chances we get and keeping a clean sheet” said Dlamini.
Sundowns were crowned African champions in the inaugural edition of the CAF Women’s Champions League held in Egypt in 2021, but surrendered their title to Morocco’s AS Far last season.
Both Sundowns and AS Far are through to the continental competition where they will headline the eight team competition set to take place between 05 – 19 November.