AFCON 2015: Ghana’s opponents South Africa unhappy with performance despite win over Zambia

South Africa coach Shakes Mashaba is not entirely happy with his team’s performance even though Ghana’s group opponents beat Zambia 1-0 in their Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) warm up match on Sunday.

During the team’s training session, Mashaba spent almost an hour on the centre line discussing the Zambian match with his charges.

Goal keeper, Darren Keet and Captain Dean Furman were notable absentees at the training session.

Keet has family commitments and Furman is expected in the country on Monday. Left back Patrick Pungwayo, who hasn’t fully recovered from an injury watched the action from the side lines.

Mashaba lectured his charges on the finer points of the game and highlighted the importance of being proactive, rather than reactive.

“The team needs a wake up call. We are not all sharp, from the goal keeper- there were balls that were dropped in the area and he did not challenge them . Defensively we allowed them to play behind us. In the mid-field we allowed them to go through. The strike force normally we don’t allow teams to build up either on the right or left. We gave their full backs numerical advantages.”

The last time South Africa qualified for the continental tournament was in 2008 in Angola, and they were eliminated in the first round

The coach attributed the flaws to inactivity, as some players haven’t played for nearly three weeks.

When Bafana Bafana leaves for Equatorial Guinea on Wednesday they won’t be short of experience; there are eight survivors from the last Afrcon finals that was held in South Africa in 2013 and striker Bernard Parker is one of them.

The Kaizer Chiefs man started his season late because of an injury and was not selected for any of the qualifiers. But he forced his way into the team after sterling performances for his club.

Central defender Rivaldo Coetzee has been part of Mashaba’s squad from the outset. The 18 year-old teenager has been to different parts of the continent with Bafana Bafana and the under 23.

Coetzee says :”The coach is not worried about the other teams he is only worried about our weaknesses and strengths, we are only working on that. most African teams are more less the same we know what to expect from them. I am sure the coach is working on some few tips of them and will inform us.”

The last time South Africa qualified for the continental tournament was in 2008 in Angola, and they were eliminated in the first round.

But the current squad has the potential to turn around that dismal record, after going through the qualifiers unbeaten.

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