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Bafana Bafana B Squander Lead In COSAFA Cup Opener

  • June 26, 2024
  • 2 min read
Bafana Bafana B Squander Lead In COSAFA Cup Opener

Bafana Bafana’s B team failed to hold onto their first-half lead, drawing 1-1 with Mozambique in the opening match of the COSAFA Cup at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on Wednesday night.

Cape Town Spurs midfielder Rushin Dortley deservedly put Bafana B ahead in the first half, capitalizing on a defensive lapse by Mozambique. However, the South Africans dropped their intensity in the second half, allowing Mozambique back into the game. Chamito Alfangega capitalized on a Bafana B mistake, unleashing a powerful shot from distance that beat goalkeeper Mondli Mpoto and leveled the score for the Mambas in the 65th minute.

This is the third consecutive year that Bafana Bafana’s inexperienced side has failed to win their opening COSAFA Cup match. The last time they secured a victory in the competition’s opening game was in 2021, also hosted in the Eastern Cape province.

Bafana B started the match brightly. Asanele Velebayi nearly put them ahead in the opening minutes with a header that rattled the crossbar. Dario then tested Mpoto with a long-range effort after Velebayi misplaced a pass, but the Royal AM goalkeeper reacted well to push the ball away for a corner.

Sibanyoni also had a chance to break the deadlock when he found himself clear on goal, but his shot was blocked by a timely intervention from Mozambique’s goalkeeper, Acacio Edmilson.

Dortley finally put Bafana B in front in the 39th minute, finishing off a well-worked move that exposed the Mozambican defense.

The second half saw a shift in momentum. Mozambique upped the tempo, forcing Mpoto to make a save from close range after Dortley lost his marker. This renewed attacking pressure paid off for the Mambas. Dario dispossessed a Bafana B player in midfield and found Alfangega, who unleashed a powerful strike that beat Mpoto for the equalizer.

Both teams pushed for a winner in the closing stages, but the match ultimately ended in a draw.

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