Loading...
Loading Live Scoring...
*All times CAT (GMT+2)

Football | Bafana Bafana

Lehlohonolo Majoro © Backpagepix

Bafana held in Afcon opener



Despite a a flurry of chances in the dying minutes, hosts South Africa were held to a goalless draw by Cape Verde Islands in the opening game of the Africa Cup of Nations at the National Stadium on Saturday night.

Bafana held majority possession and territory, but were far from clinical with their finishing as they settled for a share of the points.

The late introduction of Lerato Chabangu injected some new energy into the game, but Gordon Igesund's men could not find the final touch in front of goal.

The visitors also had their opportunities from a few good attempts, and both teams will be pleased not to have lost a nervy opening encounter.

Bafana's first attempt came in the second minute when Siphiwe Tshabalala took a free kick from a dangerous position on the edge of the box towards the corner flag, but Bernard Parker's effort sailed just wide.

Lehlohonolo Majoro was fouled in the 13th minute and Tshabalala again took the set-piece. This time the shot was fired straight at Cape Verde goalkeeper Josimar Dias.

Thabo Matlaba was strong on the ball and won a corner for Bafana in the 23rd minute, which was taken by Thuso Phala, but it was well controlled by the Cape Verde defence.

The hosts were menacing on attack, but lacked the final pass on numerous occasions, and were also closely monitored by their opponents.

Cape Verde were awarded a free kick from 30 metres out, in the middle of the park, in the 27th minute. Heldon Ramos went for goal but could not keep the shot down as it sailed into the crowd.

Two minutes later, a powerful Phala free kick from 20 metres out lacked direction as it drifted harmlessly out for a goal kick.

This video is not available in your region

Cape Verde were handed another set-piece in similar position shortly after the half-hour mark, and while Elvis Macedo aimed for goal, he was wayward with his strike.

Bafana responded with a free kick from Tshabalala near the halfway line, with his cross drifting over all the players toward the far corner flag, where it was met by Phala. His attempt, though, did not threaten the target.

A minute before the break, Cape Verde's Ryan Mendes got the ball away from a floating corner and it flew over the crossbar from a tight angle.

Five minutes after the interval, second-half substitute Chabangu tried an acrobatic bicycle kick in the box, but hist strike was wide.

On the hour mark, Tshabalala was taken off for Serero as Igesund tried to mix things up.

Cape Verde had their last chance with 17 minutes left when Ramos had the better of the Bafana defence, as he got to the ball ahead of the last line, but his header bounced centimetres wide of an outstretched Itumeleng Khune.

Shop

Gerrard: My Autobiography
Steven Gerrard is a hero to millions, not only as the inspirational captain of Liverpool FC, but as a key member of the England team.
R161.00
Rafa: My Story
Revelatory memoir from the greatest sportsman in the world today.
R182.00
Mitre Monde Soccer Ball - White
Voted as one of the UK's favourite match balls
R219.00


Comments

More expert analysis and opinion from Sport24
The opinions expressed by Sport24 experts and bloggers are theirs alone, and do not necessarily represent those of SuperSport

Event Streaming

Channel Streaming

Other Live Streaming

Event Streaming

Channel Streaming

Sports Talk



John Dykes
No gifts for Chelsea this year
For once Jose Mourinho wasn’t kidding when he said the odds are stacked against Chelsea.

Carol Radull
How do you pay tribute to Thierry Henry?
If you’re a fan of the classic musical “The Sound of Music” then you will be familiar with the...

Dr Errol Sweeney
Some refs invite criticism
Why is it that some referees appear to invite criticism? Why is it that some referees put a...

Neil Tovey
Backing Tinkler for the big time
With Vladimir Vermezovic having jumped ship, Orlando Pirates find themselves in a state of flux.

Chima Emmanuel Aguma
Wenger in or out? I say out!
After Arsenal’s loss to Stoke City this past weekend, the call for Arsene Wenger to step down as...

Sunday Oliseh
Football's new undisputed best club?
When Barcelona appointed Pep Guardiola as head coach in 2008, their primary objective was to stop...