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AFCON Qualifier: Beating Nigeria is very interesting, says Baxter, South African coach

Head coach of South Africa’s national football team, Stuart Baxter speaks during a pre-match briefing on June 9, 2017 in Uyo, on the eve of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier match between Nigeria and South Africa. PIUS UTOMI EKPEI / AFP


South African national team coach, Stuart Baxter, says winning Nigeria in an African Nations qualifier is very interesting.Baxter made the assertion at Uyo on Saturday after his team beat the Super Eagles 2-0 at the Godswill Akpabio stadium.

The South African coach said “We opened up the game in the first half but unfortunately we did not score. Beating Nigeria is very interesting.“Nigeria is a very good side but my boys prevented them from scoring. We are trying to develop our boys and expose them,’’ he said.

South African striker, Tokelo Rantie lived up to his billing as he scored in the 56th minute while Percy Tau who replaced Rantie, scored the second goal for his side in the 83rd minute.

The visitors sized up the Eagles in the first half, took advantage of their slower opponents in the second half of the match stringed crisp passes that sunk the Eagles in their backyard.

Moses Simon, Etebo Oghenekaro and Ndidi Wilfred were easily the best Eagles on the pitch on a day the team failed to fly.

Incidentally, Rantie was the player whose goals stopped the Nigeria senior male football team in the 2014 nation’s cup qualifier.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports Saturday’s defeat by South Africa was the first loss of Gernot Rohr as Super Eagles Head coach.

Rohr said after the match that his boys played well in the first half but were overpowered by the experience of the South Africans in the second half.

According to him, We had difficulties in finishing the match because we made so many efforts in the first half while some of our players were tired in the second half.

“We tried to open the wings and bring power to the team but unfortunately it did not yield fruits.

“I have trust in these boys because they played well in the first half but they could not score. We win and lose together.

“I think the next game with Cameroon will be very interesting. It will be better, much, much better,” he said.


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