Bafana Bafana break Eagles’ hearts once again

South Africa’s Bafana Bafana once again broke Nigerian hearts as they ended their twenty five year run of not beating Nigeria with a 2-0 win in Uyo on Saturday.

A stubborn and resilient Bafana Bafana held on for ninety minutes not giving the Super Eagles any room to win.

Both sides had their fair share of chances, especially in the first half, but it was the Bafana who had the cutting edge lacking in the Eagles.

In the 10th minute, after a bit of ball possession from the Eagles, Wilfred Ndidi pounced on a loose ball but his volley went wide.

Two minutes later it was Oghenekaro Etebo whose solo run was bundled to a corner by a defender but his appeal for a penalty was turned down.

Bafana attacked in the 14th minute and it was a quick interchange of passes that found the ball in the Nigerian penalty area and Vilakazi back heeled to Keagan Dolly but Ekong cleared the ball for a corner.

Etebo thought he had scored in the 21st minute when he found space in the box but his shot from close range went wide.

Moses Simon had swapped positions with Iwobi and took his marker on the run on thirty eight minutes but Khune tipped his cross over for a corner.

But it was Bafana who went closest to scoring with just three minutes left to play in the first half after Daniel Akpeyi spilled a cross from Tebogo Langerman but Themba Zwane hit the upright after connecting the rebound.

But the second half of the game was what really mattered to the visitors and the worried Nigerian fans.

Eight minutes after the restart Nigeria’s nemesis the last time both sides met, Tokello Rantie headed home a sublime cross from Ramahlwe Mphahlele to give South Africa the lead.

Five minutes after the shocking goal, Gernot Rohr decided to take off fumbling Alex Iwobi for Ahmed Musa.

Stuart Baxter took off Vilakazi for Lebomag Manyama and not long after in the 69th minute Themba Zwane almost made it 2-0 when he hit the upright after a flurry of passes left the Nigerian defence open.

A minute later Kayode Olarenwaju was thrown in to replace Kelechi Iheanacho

In the 76th minute, Moses Simon had a chance to draw level but he shot wide from the edge of the penalty area.

Ahmed Musa who had a chance to draw level a minute later; he and Olarenwaju both had chances to score with the South African defence in disarray but the ball was cleared off the line.

But the game ended in the 79th minute when Percy Muzy replaced Rantie as the Eagles were about to take a freekick, a quick clearance and through pass saw Muzy beat the offside trap from the center circle, outpace the keeper and score to put the visitors 2-0 up.

Samuel Tiyani raplaced Keagan Larenzo and then Victor Osimhen replaced Moses Simon as both sides made last minute chances to make a final impression on the game.

With two minutes left to play, Manyama had a chance to finally bury the Eagles after going past the last man but he shot shamelessly wide with just the keeper to beat.

At the final whistle, Bafana won 2-0 to finally end a 25 year jinx of not beating Nigeria.


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