Bafana coach Gordon Igesund said he is not worried about the imposing Malians’ so called physical intimidation when the two sides meet on Wednesday at Cape Town stadium in the opening of Group A’s second matches.
The two meet with their spirits sky high and buoyed by victories in their respective opening matches.
“To be honest, the Malians’ daunting height does not bother me at all. We will play our game and see what happens,” said Igesund after his team’s last practice match ahead of Wednesday’s encounter.
South Africa beat Mozambique 3-1 in their opening game while Mali shocked favourites Nigeria 2-1.
“They (Mali) played well against Nigeria but we are going to play our own brand of football which is one-two passes and I am confident of coming up with a positive result,” added Igesund.
A win for Bafana will enhance their chances of progressing to the quarter-finals and will also be a major boost for the tournament but Igesund said he was not interested in those sideshows.
“Qualification will automatically come with positive results and our main aim at the moment is winning matches.
“The standard of play so far has been fantastic. It shows the amount of talent, which is abound, on the continent,” he said.
His Malian counterpart, Djibril Drame said he was looking to build on the win over Nigeria and progress further in the tournament.
“We played Bafana in the quarter-finals of the Africa Cup of Nations last year and beat them on penalties and I hope history will repeat itself when we meet them on Wednesday,” said Drame.
The reserved coach said the Mali’s playing philosophy was the running game.
“We base our playing philosophy on hard running and playing tough but fairly,” he said adding that the team which wins on Wednesday will almost qualify for the quarter finals.
“We know the importance of winning the next match. It will almost determine who wins the Group A.”`
Confederation of African Football News
Support InfoStride News' Credible Journalism: Only credible journalism can guarantee a fair, accountable and transparent society, including democracy and government. It involves a lot of efforts and money. We need your support. Click here to Donate