Johannesburg - Bafana Bafana coach Gordon Igesund says his side were better than
Norway despite losing 1-0 to the 24th ranked team in a friendly
international match at a packed Cape Town Stadium on Tuesday.
According to the football411.com website, Tarik Elyounoussi netted the only goal of the game as he
capitalised on some slack defending to fire the Scandinavians in front
shortly before half-time, and try as they might, South Africa could not
breach the visitors' defence in the second half.
"We wanted to try and win it, and we were very unlucky. I think
we must have had about 70 percent possession," the former Ajax Cape Town
and Santos mentor said.
Video highlights: South Africa v Norway
GALLERY: Bafana v Norway
"Defensively we kept them at bay. They had some very tall
strikers which we dealt with quite easily, and we turned defence into
attack very well."
Even though statistics show that the hosts had more possession
and shots at goal, it took one moment of opportunism to separate the
sides, as Siyabonga Sangweni slipped at the vital moment and allow
Norway's number 10 in on goal.
"In the second half we created a lot more chances than we did in the first half. In the first half we were maybe too impatient.
Mamelodi Sundowns striker Katlego Mphela had the best scoring
chances for Bafana but in hindsight chose the wrong options. Kaizer
Chiefs midfielder Renilwe Letsholonyane cleverly set him up for a
scoring chance early on in the game but the striker scuffed his effort.
"They had their whole eleven players defending in their half, so it was hard to break them down.
Platinum Stars winger Thusa Phala earned the Man of the Match
award and constantly threatened the Norwegians, nevertheless, his
creativity amounted to nothing.
The second-half introduction of Ajax Amsterdam player Thulani
Serero and Chiefs hitman Bernard Parker massively improved Bafana's
attacking options but still the hosts failed to make the breakthrough.
"Second half we had players with different types of abilities, we
were able to run at teams, run at players and that caused them a lot of
"It was not about a lack of composure. We often got the ball wide
and a cross in the box and the keeper got down. We had a lot of
chances, the keeper played very well.
"The players will realise that this was a great opportunity and
that we need to work on the training field on making the right runs to
make things easier. But the players know they played well tonight.
"Overall we were the better team tonight."