Bafana will defeat Nigeria

2014-01-17 08:52

Yes, I have put my head on the chopping board but I am sticking to my guns. Bafana will definitely defeat Nigeria! One should never make such a statement without a supporting argument, so here I go.

First of all, I would like to state that this prediction has nothing to do with patriotism.  Ok maybe a little.  However, having watched both teams in action, I am of the opinion that Nigeria's playing style suits Bafana's strength and therefore puts them at a disadvantage. This is the basis of my prediction.

Nigaria are an attacking team, their strength lies in their speed and technical ability. Whenever they have possession, they look to go forward and they do so in their numbers. They pass the ball forward and run at the opposition with the sole intension of finding the back of the net. They play this system very well, however this very system will be their downfall against Bafana.

Even though the Super Eagles put pressure on their opponents with their constant onslaught on the opposition's goal, they tend to over commit when attacking and this was evident in both their matches in the competition so far.  Against Mali they struggled due to Mali being a technically and tactically astute team who play in a very organized structure, defending as a team and pouncing on the counter-attack. This type of play exposed Nigeria and they were left wanting. However, against a less organized Mozambican team, they found all the space they wanted and could attack with free will and that showed with the final score at the end of the match. One needs to take the Os Mambas win with a pinch of salt. A better team would have put Nigeria to the sword.

Yes, Nigeria's attacks play paid off against the Mambas but the Mambas were the weakest team in the group and still managed to score 2 goals. Had they been more clinical, they also could have scored 4 goals. They found their strikers with as much ease as if Xavi and Iniesta where part of the midfield. This weakness is precisely why I predict that Bafana will defeat Nigeria.

As in the Moz match Nigeria have to come at Bafana, a draw will do them no good.  As daunting as that might seem, it is actually the key to our success. Bafana have always done well in open ended matches. Our past victories indicate we excel against opposition who play more attacking football than opposition who play a generally tactical and compact match. Our strengths lie in speed and skill, we are great at running at the opposition and creating opportunities. However once a team defends as a unit and concentrates the midfield we are unable to penetrate. Agaisnt the Os Mambas we had all the space we needed and it showed in the result. Even against Mali when ever they slacked and gave us room to work with we were threatening.

Nigeria has no choice, they have to come at us and when they do we are going to punish them, rest assured South African we are going through come Sunday.


AB praises selfless skipper

2010-11-21 18:15

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