• Bafana Bafana undone by Zambia

    Bafana Bafana midfielder Andile Jali Andile Jali of South Africa

    Bafana Bafana’s 18-match unbeaten run came to an end after they suffered a 2-1 defeat against Zambia at the Moruleng Stadium in an international friendly on Tuesday, writes DYLAN APPOLIS.

    The South African national team came into the match off the back of a 2-0 win over Nigeria in their 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier on Saturday.

    However, Stuart Baxter was without the services of Tokelo Rantie, Erick Mathoho and Keagan Dolly, who were all sidelined for the clash due to their respective injuries.

    Andile Jali returned to the line-up to captain the side, while Lorenzo Gordinho and Aubrey Ngoma made their debuts for the national side.

    Meanwhile, Zambia came into the clash on the back of a shock 1-0 defeat at the hands of Mozambique over the weekend.

    Bafana Bana got off to a good start and looked comfortable in possession, however they struggled to produce any clear-cut opportunities in the final third as they were reduced to taking shots from distance.

    Baxter’s side eventually took the lead in the 22nd  minute when Lebogang Manyama latched on to a measured cross from Kermit Erasmus before the forward headed the ball into the net to make it 1-0.

    Bafana nearly doubled their lead in the 31st minute after Erasmus was played through on goal by Jali before blazing his shot over the target.

    Percy Tau came close two minutes later when he cut inside from the right, beating his marker before unleashing a strike at goal, but his effort failed to hit the target.

    At the other end, Zambia opted to make a double substitution in the 38th minute, introducing Lubinda Mundia and Godfrey Ngwenya after struggling to keep hold of the ball for most of the first stanza.

    Zambia came out a better side in the second half and started seeing more possession on the ball when they forced substitute Ronwen Williams into making a superb save to deny Malama’s strike from 20 yards out.

    However, the visitors eventually equalised, as substitute Brian Mwila unleashed a strike from outside the area to beat Williams at the near-post, 1-1.

    The home side could’ve restored their lead four minutes later when Tau played Manyama through on goal before firing his effort straight into the hands of Chibwe.

    Zambia then took the lead in the 79th minute as Lubinda Mundia capitalised on a defensive error by Williams and Lorenzo Gordinho to guide the ball into an empty net, 2-1.

    Bafana should’ve equalised in stoppage time, however Gordinho was unable to beat the Zambian shot-stopper from six yards out as Zambia clinched the win and ended South Africa’s 18-match unbeaten run in all competitions.

    Photo: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

    This story originally appeared on SportsClub.co.za

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