Bafana Bafana have suffered injury setbacks with news that goalkeeper Darren Keet, defenders Anele Ngcongca and Thabo Matlaba as well as midfielder Mpho Makola will play no part in the crucial return clash against Cameroon. Keet is down with a stomach bug, Ngcongca and Makola, who were taken off in the first leg encounter in Limbe on Saturday, 26 March, have failed to recover from a calf muscle strain and quad muscle contusion respectively while Matlaba is suffering from concussion from the last match. Bafana Bafana medico Dr Thulani Ngwenya says: ‘We have been monitoring the injured players since our last game but due to the limited time between the matches, they have failed to recover from their injuries so they will not be able to play against Cameroon on Tuesday. Keet’s stomach bug only started last night but got worse this morning and he has also been ruled out.’
Rivaldo Coetzee replaced Ngcongca in Limbe while William Twala took the place of Makola. Matlaba was able to finish the match. Bafana Bafana and Cameroon meet on Tuesday night (29 March) at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban. Kick off is at 19:00. Meanwhile goalkeeper and captain Itumeleng Khune is confident Bafana Bafana can still book their place in Gabon, but will have to fight hard.
Khune says: ‘It is still possible to get to Gabon, but we have to keep our heads high and fight for the remaining nine points. We cannot afford to throw the towel in now – we have to start with tomorrow’s clash to start collecting the points. With the kind of football we are playing we can still do it, but it starts with us, we have to believe that we can. Some of the things we need to get right in the match will be to keep our composure in front of goals and also deal with their set pieces well, other than that I don’t see them scoring from open play because we are solid at the back. We are prepared mentally, physically and emotionally for a tough clash. We cannot afford to drop any more points.’
Photo credit: AFP PHOTO / CARL DE SOUZA