Bafana Bafana

Bafana moving on - Pienaar

2012-06-05 17:09
Steven Pienaar (Gallo)
Rustenburg - Bafana Bafana captain Steven Pienaar on Tuesday said the team must move on from the weekend's developments as he rallied his charges for their remaining Group A 2014 FIFA Soccer World Cup qualifying matches.

South Africa play Botswana on Saturday in Gaborone, having stuttered at the start campaign when they were held to a 1-1 draw by Ethiopia in Phokeng on Sunday.

It was Bafana's seventh successive game without a victory and the final nail in the coffin for national coach Pitso Mosimane, who was sacked on Monday evening.

"The players are down after losing the coach, but we have to move on," said Pienaar.

"I have been playing for over 10 years and seen coaches and come and go.

"He (Mosimane) spoke to the team last night (Monday) and wished us well, but that is football.

"We also wish him well for the future."

Steve Komphela takes over on an interim basis while Moroka Swallows' Gordon Igesund remains favourite for the full-time position after the home friendly against Gabon next Friday.

Pienaar said the team would support Komphela, and turn over a new leaf after their latest disappointment.

The 2010 World Cup hosts have to finish top of their group to progress to the next stage of qualifying for Brazil in two years' time.

"A new coach is here and we will support him 100 percent," Pienaar said.

"We are disappointed with the game against Ethiopia, but the spirit is still high.

"But we also didn't lose, and we played well in the second half.

"This is where I hope we'll take that to the game against Botswana."

Pienaar said the team would try and regain some confidence against their neighbours, who were also on the back foot having lost their opening game 2-0 to Central African Republic on the weekend.

The Zebras, however, were still a formidable outfit, having qualified for the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations, which South Africa failed to do.

"They are also coming from a bad result, so there will be a lot of pride at stake," Pienaar said.

"We said before the Ethiopia game that there aren't any small sides in football anymore.

"We don't want to lose to our neighbours, but there is still a lot to play for in the qualifiers for us.

"We want to go to Botswana more relaxed, put them under pressure and get the three points we want."

Read more on:    bafana bafana  |  steven pienaar  |  soccer


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