Durban - The city of Durban was buzzing in anticipation ahead of Bafana Bafana’s decisive Africa Cup of Nations encounter against Morocco later on Sunday (19:00).
South African flags, green and gold t-shirts and painted faces, all amongst proudly attired home fans, were edging closer towards the Moses Mabhida Stadium where a few hundred had already taken their seats.
The hosts will be aiming for a win and the full three points to seal their place in the quarter-finals of the continental spectacle.
Buoyed by the performance of Gordon Igesund’s men in their last match on Wednesday - a 2-0 victory over Angola - the nation was looking forward to another strong performance by Bafana Bafana.
A sell-out 56 000 crowd was expected at the KwaZulu-Natal venue, which is situated less than half a kilometre from the Indian Ocean.
A few thousand of those fans warmed up for the game by spending another scorching day on Durban’s ‘Golden Mile’ beachfront, although some rain-threatening cloud cover had moved over, two hours prior to kick-off.
South Africa can qualify for the quarter-finals with all three results - a win, draw and even a loss - although they will also need the Angolans to either beat or share the spoils with Cape Verde Islands in the other Group A match that kicks off simultaneously in Port Elizabeth.
Morocco must win the match to assure qualification, but a draw may be enough if there is a similar scoreline in the other group.