Bafana Bafana

Bafana are improving - Shakes

2014-10-12 13:06
Shakes Mashaba (Gallo Images)

Johannesburg - Bafana Bafana coach Ephraim 'Shakes' Mashaba says his side is steadily improving.

Bafana beat Congo-Brazzaville 2-0 in their Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) Qualifier played on Saturday, in Pointe Noire, to top the log in Group A with seven points after three games.

The Bafana mentor has now beaten the Congolese two times - the first in 1992 in Johannesburg.

"I am happy to have beaten Congo for the second time," said Mashaba after the game.

"The first time I was a stand-in coach. We defeated them 1-0, today it was two and I hope the next time it will be three. But it shows there is some improvement from the coaches, we are getting somewhere. It also shows we are on track with our vision."

Second half goals from strikers Bongani Ndulula and Tokelo Rantie were enough to see the South Africans return home with maximum points.

Mashaba said his players had been impressive with their performances.

"If you look at the personnel we brought in, they looked good. Youngster Rivaldo Coetzee was outstanding, Reneilwe Letsholonyane gave us what we wanted.

"Going forward we will bring in one or two more players, because we are building a new side and I hope it will bring more results."

Mashaba said if Bafana qualified for Afcon 2015, he would test the strength of the squad in preparation for the 2018 World Cup.

Bafana are yet to concede a goal in the qualifiers, and the results have been more satisfying. according to Mashaba.

"It's a combination of things because when you play good football without scoring it doesn't help, but you can also play bad and get three points.

"But here we have combined the two because the boys are playing good football, it's been quite a while since I last saw our team playing such good football."

South Africa still has another date with Congo on Wednesday, at the Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane - a match that could clinch qualification for Afcon 2015.

Despite being on the verge of qualification, Mashaba said he would still work on keeping his players grounded.

"This result has led us to the good and the bad - players when they have taken a lead, they're showboating and it's a tough thing to get it out of them.

"They are booming with confidence and it nearly cost us. If it was not for Senzo Meyiwa they would have scored a goal or two."

The coach said Bafana would adopt a similar approach in the next match.

"We need to guard against complacency.

"Playing at home is also not a luxury anymore as the players become more under pressure from the fans and end up making mistakes. But I believe it's a plus to us having played three tough games without conceding."

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