Bafana Bafana face Brave Warriors in the South African “survival” derby

Themba Zwane of South Africa is challenged by Franck Kessie of Ivory Coast during the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations Finals game between Ivory Coast and South Africa at Al Salam Stadium in Cairo, Egypt on 24 June 2019 © Ryan Wilkisky/BackpagePix

After succumbing to defeats in their opening matches, South Africa faces neighbors Namibia in the Southern Derby as Group D match day 2 convenes on Friday at Al Salam Stadium, Cairo. The all South match kicks off at 22:00 local time (20:00 GMT).

Bafana Bafana dell 1-0 to South Africa, the same result conceded by the Brave Warriors against Morocco, both last Sunday. Now both sides will enter the game with nothing in mind but a victory if they wanted to revive their knockout stage qualification.

It’s the second time in AFCON history that the South African neighbors lock horns together after 1998 when Benedict McCarthy scored four goals in 30 minutes to hand Bafana Bafana a 4-1 victory.

While Namibia never came out from the group stage in their previous two participations, South Africa were crowned champions in their debut appearance at home in 1996, but failed to imitate the same glory since then.


Previous AFCON meetings

16.02.1998 Bobo-Dioulasso South Africa 4-1 Namibia

What they said

Stuart Baxter (Coach, South Africa)

We are not satisfied with the defeat against Cote d’Ivoire and appreciate that our fans are disappointed, but these players need support at all means to give them the chance to rebound and get the needed results. We respect Namibia but we have to win and get back to the right track. It’s the same situation for the, and that makes the game even more difficult. We are just thinking of the game against Namibia and afterwards we will see what happens.

Dean Furman (Defender, South Africa)

We believe in our capabilities and in our coach. We play to his instructions and want to get the needed results. Criticizing is part of the game and we have to accept that but on the way that helps us to achieve our goals.

Ricardo Manetti (Coach, Namibia)

This is going to be a totally different game that that against Morocco. I believe we have to control possession and try to overcome South Africa. We respect them much but I expect my players to do a great job. We will fight for the three points and it’s in our hands to decide how far we will go. Football is not like mathematics, and everything can happen, If we looked to the things from a different angle, our defeat to Morocco could be a positive lesson. We will leave great memories in this AFCON and I’m proud to be here.

Ronald Ketjijere (Midfielder, Namibia)

It’s exciting to be here after all this absence, and we will try to go past the group stage this time. We are working hard to write a new chapter of history so that our people know well the names of this generation’s players.