An experimental Bafana Bafana side was held to a 1-1 draw with neighbours Namibia in an international friendly on Thursday evening. FourFourTwoZA writer Dean Workman analyses the players’ performance after a disappointing night.
The South Africans took the lead in the first half after Keagan Dolly won possession high up the pitch before feeing it to Kermit Erasmus in the box who in turn found the unmarked Luther Singh who made no mistake in firing home.
The South Africans were dominating possession but were finding it difficult to create any clear cut chances and were eventually punished at the start of the second stanza when Mosa Lebusa got caught under a high ball and allowed Absalom Limbodi in on goal and the Namibian coolly slotted through Ronwen Williams legs to level matters.
The official team photos of @BafanaBafana and Namibia in this international friendly match #OneNationOneBeer #WeLoveItHere @CastleLagerSA @LeCoqSportif_SA pic.twitter.com/ky5QbZHUbMOctober 8, 2020
A number of second-half substitutes saw the game lack a tempo and flow and both sides were forced to settle for a draw.
Here are the player ratings for the encounter:
Ronwen Williams: 6/10
The captain on the day did well to command and organise his backline while he also looked comfortable with the ball at his feet in a game where he didn’t have much to do. With his quality, Williams would have been disappointed in letting the Nambian goal slip through him and giving up his clean sheet.
Abbubaker Mobara: 4/10
Mobara came in as a late replacement for Reeve Frosler and struggled to come alive in the game. Defensively he was caught out of position on a few occasions despite showing some defensive nouse at stages. He also failed to get forward to great effect, offering little in terms of an attacking outlet.
Thibang Phete: 6/10
Making his debut, Portuguese based Phete performed admirably in what is a new environment alongside new players for him. The defender kept things simple at the back showing good distribution and organisational skills before being taken off with 20 minutes to play.
Three debutants in the 🇿🇦 #BafanaBafana XI: GK: Ronwen Williams (c)RB: Reeve FroslerCB: Thibang PheteCB: Mosa LebusaLB: Innocent MaelaCM: Mothobi MvalaCM: Siyethemba SithebeCM: Thabo NodadaFW: Keagan DollyFW: Luther SinghFW: Kermit Erasmus... up against 🇳🇦Namibia. pic.twitter.com/S7O2hnEYeoOctober 8, 2020
Mosa Lebusa: 4/10
The Mamelodi Sundowns man may have been Ntseki’s experience pick at the back but he struggled with the pace of the game at times while he was also the one caught out for the Namibian goal as he failed to judge a ball over the top allowing Limbodi in to equalise.
Innocent Maela: 7/10
The Orlando Pirates defender was one of the standout performers on the day. Maela was a solid part of the defence while also showing great enthusiasm to get forward making runs into the box and also clipping in dangers crosses and he was unluck not to be awarded a penalty when he was hacked down in the box following a lung busting run forward.
Siyethemba Sithebe: 5/10
On debut the hard-working midfielder ran his socks off as he looked to impress Ntseki. Despite his work ethic and vigour he struggled to pick out any killer passes and gave the ball away on a number of occasions.
Thabo Nodada: 6/10
Nodada is Mr Consistency for his club side Cape Town City with his work ethic. While he formed an important part of Bafana’s pressing game on the night, working tirelessly to close down the opposition and win the ball back, he struggled to control the game in the middle of the park by dictating the pace of the game.
Mothobi Mvala 4/10
The newly signed Mamelodi Sundowns midfielder played in the holding midfield role on the evening and although he made a number of tackles and looked to disrupt play he did not do enough on the ball and was eventually taken off with 35 minutes to play.
Keagan Dolly 7/10
While it is clear that he needs to work on his fitness, Dolly showed just why he is so highly regarded with a quality performance. Dolly was only one of a few players who showed confidence when running at his man and created a number of opening through his hard work down the right flank.
A well worked goal involving Kermit Erasmus whose delicate pass was well finished by Luther Singh. Bafana Bafana 1-0 NamibiaOctober 8, 2020
Kermit Erasmus: 5/10
While he showed great composure to slip through Singh for the opener, the new Sundowns man ultimately struggled and was eventually subbed off with Ntseki saying he was complaining about cramp.
Luther Singh: 7/10
Along with Dolly the tricky winger was one of the only threats for Bafana on the night. The Portugal based forward not only got his goal with a calm finish but he continue to threaten through out and would have certainly impressed his coach.
Ricardo Goss: 7/10
While he only came on with 17 minutes to play, Goss showed his quality with a fine save just a couple of minutes after coming on. Goss was calm and composed and showed that he can put up a fight for the Bafana number one spot.
Teboho Mokoena: 6/10
One of the most promising talents in the country was given the final 30 minutes to impress on debut for Bafana. Mokoena showed his strength and steel in the midfield while also showed his eye for a pass. The youngster with an admirable performance in what surely is the first of many caps for the National team.
Motjeka Madisha 5/10
Madisha replaced Sundowns teammate Lebusa with 30 minutes to go, with Lebus suffering from cramp. The Downs defender though took a while to settle into the backline and looked a bit erratic at times.
Sfiso Hlanti: 5/10
Playing the final 17 minutes, Hlanti failed to impress going forward with some wayward crosses while he also looked vulnerable at the back.
Lyle Foster: 4/10
Foster replaced Erasmus just 10 minutes into the second half but the Belgium based youngster failed to have much of an impact.
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