Bafana v Angola sold out
SA coach Gordon Igesund (AFP)
Durban - A sell-out crowd of 56 000 is expected at Wednesday's Group A Africa Cup of Nations soccer clash between hosts Bafana Bafana and Angola.
Public faith in the hosts has seemingly waned since the start of the competition on Saturday, when South Africa could only draw with minnows Cape Verde Islands.
However, there was a sense of expectancy and belief in Durban that their fortunes could be reversed at the Moses Mabhida Stadium.
The AFCON tournament is yet to burst into life but there is a feeling that a win could change that mood.
Earlier on Wednesday, Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula, accompanied by SAFA president Kirsten Nematandani, handed over team jerseys to the players.
He wished the team well against the Antelopes, a side which has not beaten Bafana in six meetings.
"You came here to defend the interest of the country," Mbalula said.
"Be ready to fight and defend your nation until the end. Giants emerge out of challenges and difficulties, and even champions emerge out of the same. What separates men from boys is their experience and determination."
He urged the players to do what they were supposed to do to the best of their ability.
"Everyone supports this team and we believe in you, and you have to believe in yourselves," Mbalula said.