“Like in any journey one takes you gain or lose, you make honest reflections, build on and consolidate for the future,” says minister of sport Fukile Mbalula, who is in Equatorial Guinea.
This follows the bundling out of Bafana Bafana from proceeding to the Afcon Quarter-finals, last night after suffering a 2-1 drubbing by determined Ghana.
Yes, our boys played very well but inexperience was our downfall. After-all, such big stages are meant for errors -which I hope, as they pack they’re bags back home- they’d rectify as we prepare for 2016 and 2017, respectively.
Let me also take this opportunity to analyse players’ performance, whether you side with me or disagree it must be pointed out:
Brilliant Khuzwayo: 1-10 (6)
The boy made brilliant saves considering this was his first appearance in Afcon. The only snag he was let down by his defence.
Eric Mathoho: 1-10 (5)
The tall defender marshaled his defence well despite being caught napping and at times, failing to clear airbone balls. Should work on areal-balls.
Rivaldo Coetzee: 1-10 ( 5)
The youngest lad from NC was brilliant and complemented Mathoho very well. With more experience and more game time he will be one of our best defenders.
Anele Ngcongca: 1-10 (4)
His only downfall is talking too much and arguing with referees, instead of doing the opposite. By now Anele should know arguing with referees -especially in hostile environments- would make your life a living hell.
His international experience should have brought confidence and stability in the team, alas it was no to be.
Thabo Matlaba: 1-10 (4)
Playing for Bucs in the African Continental games would have helped Matlaba to show agility and responsiveness but he faded away and at times, gave away the ball too easily. He must pick- up his socks if he still dreams of making it to the squad.
Andile Jali:1-10 (5)
Did not show tenacity, urgency and was laid back last night. His contribution in the middle of the park was nowhere to be found. Also did not complete some passes, especially in the second half. He has the quality to be one of our best export in Belgium.
Reneilwe Letsholonyane:1-10 (3)
As a sub and one of senior members of the team, he should have carried the team on his shoulders but he failed dismally. Gave away silly balls. His attacking and defending capability eluded him. Not once. Not twice. And not thrice either. He should question his contribution to the team.
Dean Furman:1-10 (8)
Our captain fantastic. Reminded us the days of Eric Tinkler, John Moeti and Linda Buthelezi. He tackled, ruffled and tried at all cost to win the ball as the above mentioned stars would do. Fight until bitter end. Despite elementary errors, he’s our future el capitan!
Thuso Phala: 1-10 (6)
Tried his best; but his lowest ebb was trying too much to take on the Ghananian defence. He’s definetely in future Bafana set-up.
Mandla Masango: 1-10 (8)
The Chiefs’ striker gave us something to write home about following his beautifully, crafted volley in the first half. World class and should contend for one of the best goals for the tournament. However, after the scoring he went to sleep and at times, tried to shoot from distance but to no avail. He has engraved himself a special heart in the hard- to -please South Africans.
Bernard Parker: 1-10 (4)
As as sub striker, Parker did not create or attempt a shot at the opponents keeper’. It is said games are won from the bench but for our boys it proved too little. With age concerns, he should give other youngsters a chance.
Tokelo Rantie: 1-10 (4)
Playing against best defenders in Africa, comes with a heavy tag, and Rantie failed to test them. Despite scoring and creating -the least he could do- most of the time he huffed and puffed. His contribution in the team is questionable.
Bongani Ndulula: 1-10 (4)
Lack of experience was his downfall. Although he scored one of important goal’s, some of the games he featured was found wanting. Should pick up his chin. He’s still in Bafana set-up.
Sibusiso Vilakazi: 1-10 (6)
Last night was his worst game ever, and I think he would like to forget that as quick as possible. Past two games he was a marvel to watch, even soliciting praises from his hard to crack coach Gavin Hunt. He has a future with Bafana.