Huge team effort nullifies Brazil | SASCOC - SASCOC

Huge team effort nullifies Brazil

As if being competitive against a Neymar-led Brazil with a full complement of 11 players wasn’t tough enough South Africa, down to 10 men for the last third of the game, surpassed the expectations of even their most ardent fans when they held the hosts to a goalless draw in their opening Group A game at the Mane Garrincha Stadium in Brasilia, writes Mo Allie.

Owen da Gama’s side, despite being restricted to counter attacks, looked dangerous on the break when playing with their full complement in the first half but the dismissal of Mothobi Mvala on the hour mark completely changed the dynamic of the contest as they were forced to defend stoically against a dominant Brazil for the last half hour.

And how well they coped with the considerable threat of Barcelona ace Neymar, Manchester City-bound Gabriel Jesus and Lazio star Felipe Anderson who showed signs of frustration the longer they failed to breach South Africa’s dogged defence.

And when Brazil did find a way past South Africa’s rearguard, they found goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune in magnificent form. The 29-year-old Kaizer Chiefs custodian produced a series of blinding, acrobatic saves to deny Neymar in both halves.

Right back Abbubaker Mobara enhanced his reputation by shackling Brazil’s superstar with a superb display of pick-pocket- like tackling, wonderful anticipation and concentration while fellow defenders Rivaldo Coetzee, Erick Mathoho and Deolin Mekoa stepped up a gear to compensate for the loss of Mvala.

With Brazil launching wave after wave of attacks.South Africa also had a huge slice of luck midway through the second half when an unmarked Jesus saw his simple tap-in at the far post strike the upright with Khune prone on the ground.

It was a different story in the first half as South Africa dealt competently with Brazil’s attacking threat, often counter-attacking with flair and skill that had even the home fans applauding. Keagan Dolly showed his class with a series of intelligent runs and defence-splitting passes that France-based Lebogang Mothibi and Menzi Masuku failed to convert.

Dolly himself came agonizingly close to breaking the deadlock early in the second half when his shot from a difficult angle went narrowly wide, that after a lovely exchange of passes that freed the SA captain in the danger zone.

The draw was a massive moral victory for Da Gama’s side who should now approach their remaining two games against Denmark and Iraq, who earlier played to a goalless draw, with a spring in their step.


  1. Lucky Popo Hlangu

    August 5, 2016 at 5:59 am

    But your kit is a disgrace. Where is our all SA soccer national teams’ Nike? Big nation like SA wearing a no name kit.

  2. Kgomotso Ntemane

    August 5, 2016 at 6:45 am

    Poor poor you couldn’t find a reputable sponsorship, instead you went for another Chinese brand for second time , it was Erke now 360 degrees, you’re a disgrace even the players are very shy in that oversize Kit of yours

  3. Mpho Sefatsa

    August 5, 2016 at 7:43 am

    I have never seen such an ugly football kit in my life, come on sascoc you are embarrassing the kids. Why don’t you use our traditional Nike kit. That kit represents what SA is not.

  4. Mpho Sefatsa

    August 5, 2016 at 7:43 am

    I have never seen such an ugly football kit in my life, come on sascoc you are embarrassing the kids. Why don’t you use our traditional Nike kit. That kit represents what SA is not.

  5. Saida Cubungu

    August 5, 2016 at 7:47 am

    SASCOC is a disgrace. The whole world is laughing at us.Our players are made memes because of your stupid kit. Aarg man Drop the ego bul and let Nike do the job

  6. Mpho Sefatsa

    August 5, 2016 at 8:03 am

    Last Olympics it was Erke, now its 360 degrees. whats going to be next? shizune or Algebra

  7. Saida Cubungu

    August 5, 2016 at 8:07 am

    The players will get tired of this mediocrity and stay at home one day. During qualification they used Nike, I don’t understand these people

  8. Asia Kruger-Sanchez

    August 5, 2016 at 8:30 am

    well done Amaglugs! you’ve done the nation proud. all the best 4 the next match

  9. Lebohang C. Motsoatsoa

    August 5, 2016 at 8:37 am

    The red card made life difficult for us in the second half but we played well as a team to keep them at bay.

  10. Nkutha Teboho

    August 5, 2016 at 12:19 pm

    aikhona sascoc dat kit its not it stop embarassin our players au

  11. Mphele Caiphus Nkwagatse

    August 5, 2016 at 12:32 pm

    Nice play but the kit lol …I thought I will never see a horrible looking kit again than the one they wore at 2006 olympics. Can’t wait to see the blitzbokke kit.

  12. Thabani Qhawe Jangaza

    August 5, 2016 at 9:08 pm

    SASCOC embarrassed us at Olympics with that armature football kit. sies!!! what a disgrace. This shows that doesn’t care about our football, how can they let our stars wear such a disgraceful ugly kit.

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