Bafana Bafana

Mashaba: We must qualify

2014-10-11 07:51
Shakes Mashaba (Gallo Images)

Johannesburg - Bafana Bafana coach Shakes Mashaba has urged his charges to break the eight year duck and qualify for the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations in Morocco.

"You must also remember that we haven't qualified for major tournaments in a long time," Mashaba said.

"We must rid ourselves of this mentality of 'if only we can get to the next round' that is why we are not here for draw."

Bafana face Congo at the Stade Municipal de Pointe-Noire on Saturday in a group A Afcon 2015 qualifier.

Mashaba said he expected nothing but an away victory against the Red Devils.

"The mission is to qualify for 2015. We have to win this one and the home leg and we have one foot in Morocco."

Congo were familiar opponents for Mashaba, who was the first Bafana coach to face and defeat them in 1992.

"It really brings back memories and I want to make it worthwhile and qualify for Afcon - I believe that would be befitting."

The encounter was a top of the group clash -- with Congo leading the log and Bafana in second place.

Congo had won both of their games -- beating Nigeria 3-2 and Sudan 2-0 -- while Bafana registered a 3-0 win over Sudan and goalless draw against Nigeria.

"If you look at the four teams in the group, the two top teams haven't lost a game, and if we continue this way we -- SA and Congo -- will go through."

Although historically Bafana held the upper hand over the Red Devils having won four and lost once with the remainder being draws, Mashaba said statistics counted for nothing.

"In my view stats don't have a big role in these games. There are no guarantees because it is about now. It is another day, another game.

The former national under-23 coach expected tough conditions in Pointe-Noire.

"It is going to be a very physical game. It is going to need a strong match official because with a weaker referee it is going to be a spoilt match."

Follow Sport24's LIVE and interactive match commentary for this vital Group A AFCON 2015 qualifying match!

Read more on:    bafana bafana  |  afcon 2015  |  soccer
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