Vanguard (Lagos)

7 November 2012

Nigeria/South Africa: We'll Break Nigerians Hearts - Banyana Banyana

Photo: SAFA
Banyana Banyana facing Nigeria in a previous international friendly match.

Banyana Banyana Hat trick hero Andisiwe Mgcoyi is confident that they can beat Nigeria for the first time when the two sides meet in the semi-final of the 2012 African Women's Championship in Bata today.

KICK-OFF 5.30 p.m.

While it was the Super Falcons who won the last competitive match between the two sides, Banyana will be encouraged by the back-to-back draws they managed during friendly matches played earlier this year.

The Nigerians qualified as the best team in Group B after winning all their three matches, while the South Africans were the second best side in Group A behind hosts Equatorial Guinea.

However, Banyana's top scorer in the tournament believes

they can shock the reigning champions by playing as a team and making full use of their chances.

"We've never beaten Nigeria, the best we have done has been a draw but we are determined to change this," said Mgcoyi.

"We have to forget about the past and look at this game as an opportunity to make history."

Mgcoyi has spearheaded the Banyana attack - scoring four goals in the last two matches, including a hat trick in the 4-1 win over DR Congo - but she believes the good form shown by the likes of Sannah Mollo and Nothando Vilakazi and the experience of players like Portia Modise, Janine van Wyk and captain Amanda Dlamini makes them a strong side.

"I strongly believe that we have a team that is capable of standing up to Nigeria and get that win we need to go through to the finals," she said.

"We have quick and skilful attacking players, our defence is looking solid and the spirit in the camp is very high."

"We know that it's going to be a difficult game but we're ready for the Falcons and we'll try fight from the start to the end of the game."

Super Falcons' attacking midfielder, Stella Mbachu said there is no cause for alarm for her side's semifinal clash against Banyana Banyana of South Africa at the ongoing African Women's Championship in Equatorial Guinea. Both sides will clash on Wednesday at the Nkoantoma Stadium in Bata.

The last time both teams clashed at the AWC was in the final of the 2010 game hosted by South Africa. Nigeria won the encounter to claim their sixth title.Nigeria edged Cote d'Ivoire 3-1 to claim top spot in Group B on nine points while the South Africans came second in Group A behind leaders and hosts, Equatorial Guinea.

Mbachu said her teammates are in buoyant mood going into the Wednesday's semifinal tie against rivals, Banyana Banyana.

"I'm confident going into the semis against the Banyana Banyana of South Africa. Everyone in the team is mentally prepared for the challenge and ready to give their best aimed at retaining the title.

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