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Da Gama’s U23 football boys go down in Sudan
- Updated: March 23, 2015
The South African Under-23 men’s football side went to 2-0 to Sudan in the first leg of the 2015 All Africa Games qualifier played at the El Obied Stadium in Sudan on Sunday.
Despite the defeat, coach Owen Da Gama said he was confident of reversing the scoreline when the two meet in South Africa in two weeks for the return leg.
Da Gama’s team started brightly but found themselves on the back foot soon after when they found themselves chasing the game after 20 minutes.
South Africa’s central striker Mohammed Patel could have opened the scoring for the visitors in the sixth minute when he came face to face with the Sudanese goalkeeper but took too long to take a shot and was dispossessed as the Sudanese breathed a sigh of relief.
South Africa had another chance to take the lead in the eighth minute when Khayelihle Shozi took a shot but his effort was safely saved by the busy Sudanese goalkeeper.
And having survived the early scare, Sudan then took the lead in the 21st minute when Mahir Osman Idriss Faid scored from a corner kick after the South African defence had failed to clear their lines.
It was Sudan who continued to exert pressure on South Africa in the second half and duly got the second goal in the 69th minute through substitute Ali Abdelrahman to seal a good win for the home side.
However, Da Gama was far from being despondent by the scoreline. ‘We want to give credit to Sudan for making use of their chances, we didn’t know much about them but I don’t think we played badly.
‘But at the end of the day, goals are what count in the game of football. We should do better in the return leg,’ said coach Owen Da Gama
South Africa will host Sudan on 11 April 2015 in the second leg of the All Africa Games qualifier back in South Africa.
South African XI: Ngubeni, Gordinho; Macheke; Gumede (c), Sibande, Sekese, Mngonyama, Masuku, Shozi, Mosiatlhaga, Patel
Sudan XI: Ahmed, Khalid, Shareef, Mahmoud, Mazin, Athar El Tahir, Waleed Alaa Eldin, Bisha, Ibrahim, Maher, Nasreddin