Bafana Bafana

Parker: I'm a professional

2013-11-21 18:09
Bernard Parker (Gallo Images)
Cape Town - Bafana Bafana and Kaizer Chiefs striker Bernard Parker says his professional approach to the game has helped him overcome the heartbreak of scoring an own-goal against Ethiopia in a World Cup qualifying match in Addis Ababa back in June.

Bafana suffered a 2-1 defeat which proved decisive in their qualifying campaign, with the Ethiopians going on to advance to the last round of playoffs in September.

The Amakhosi goal-poacher made amends for his mistake earlier this week when he scored the winning goal for South Africa against reigning world and European champions, Spain, at the FNB Stadium.

Parker did well to compose himself after collecting a through-ball from Oupa Manyisa before flicking it over the already committed Spanish goalkeeper, Victor Valdes, in the 56th minute.

It was his 19th goal in Bafana colours and took him past Phil Masinga (18) in South Africa's top five goal-scorers list.

Speaking exclusively to Sport24 on Thursday, the 27-year-old striker revealed his delights of scoring against the best team in the world.

“I don’t know how to explain it, it’s really unbelievable,” Parker said.

“For me it still feels like a dream, I mean scoring against the world and European champions, it’s something I will cherish for the rest of my life and one day I will tell my grandchildren about it,” he quipped.

Parker also hinted that he never allowed his critics to kill his confidence after Bafana failed to snatch a spot in the 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifying playoffs, insisting he responded professionally.

“Look, I am a professional, what happened that time in Ethiopia is now behind me.

“I am now moving forward and I have scored the most number of goals than any other player in the current Bafana team.

“People will always try to bring up the bad things in every situation we cannot change that, but as for me I am happy that I finally got the most important goal which everyone in the country will always cherish.”

As the focus now switches back to domestic football, starting with the Telkom Knockout semi-finals this weekend, the former Thanda Royal Zulu skipper said people must expect 100% commitment from the Glamour Boys when they meet an in-form Platinum Stars on Saturday night.

‘‘You must expect 100% commitment from every player on Saturday.

“The coach told us to keep our focus and to show our determination.

“Yes it is not going to be easy against Stars but we are going to fight until the last whistle just to reward the coach for the faith he is showing to us.”

On top of that, the Bafana striker also said that he would like to see Amakhosi retaining the titles they won last season.

“We are still fighting to do better than we did last season, but it’s still early days, by keeping our minds focused we can retain all our titles we won last season,” added Parker.

Chiefs will take on Dikwena in the semi-finals of the R4.25m competition at the FNB Stadium.

Kick-off is at 20:15. 


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