Bafana plot Nigeria's downfall

Positive mentality fuels Afcon belief

10 July 2019 | Sports

South Africa's Lebo Mothiba was in outstanding form in the round-of-16 match against Egypt at the weekend, when Bafana Bafana won 1-0.

Stuart Baxter's charges are now preparing for a massive Afcon 2019 quarterfinal encounter against the Super Eagles of Nigeria today at Cairo International Stadium.

It is another huge game, which has elicited lots of talking points among soccer fans.

However, Mothiba, who set up the winning goal for Thembinkosi Lorch, said Bafana Bafana need to maintain their 100% focus and positive mentality.

“In the match against Egypt, everyone gave 100% effort and focus, and now we need to keep that going.

“The win over Egypt galvanised the spirits and we are all looking forward to the next game against Nigeria. We need that positive mentality,” Mothiba said.

“The coach knows what we need to do against Nigeria. The boss is in charge of that; we will follow his instructions. For the match against Egypt, the coach really pushed us and we are ready for Nigeria and want to give everything.”

Mothiba said the Super Eagles are one of Africa's giants, but he is not sure if they are faster and tactically more astute than Egypt. He, however, said Nigeria must be treated with the utmost respect.

“In the match against Egypt, we played South African football; we were good when the ball was at our feet, but my role is to hold up the ball for the strikers to arrive in the box.

“Mine is one-touch and play the ball into space,” he said, explaining how the winning goal was manufactured.

“The defender thought I would play in front of him for the goal, but I outwitted him. I won't change my style of play - simple and straightforward.”

Mothiba said he was no under pressure to score a goal for the team, as long as they continue to chalk-up positive results.

“Scoring is a bonus; goals will come. It is important for the team to win, not to focus on individual awards.”

NAMPA/ANA