In an attempt to shield beleaguered coach Stuart Baxter‚ Bafana Bafana captain Thulani Hlatshwayo has said that criticism must also be pointed in the direction of the players after the embarrassing 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifier goalless draw against minnows Seychelles on Tuesday
The result in Victoria has put Bafana in a tricky position to qualify for the Afcon finals in Cameroon next year with two potentially difficult matches against bitter rivals Nigeria at home and Libya away remaining.
“Us as players‚ we need to take responsibility of what is happening‚” he said.
“The coach is there to give us the game plan‚ we are the ones who are playing on the field and we must do the right things on the field.
“We need to take our chances because when we do that‚ it will make the job of the coach easier.”
Bafana walloped Seychelles 6-0 at FNB Stadium but could not find the back of the net away from home on Tuesday and Hlatshwayo said their problem was failure to convert the chances they created.
“Things didn’t go our way in Victoria‚ we did not finish the chances that we created but we have to move on from this.
“The weather was not too hot‚ it was a bit cooler but we were not able to play our free flowing football‚” he said.
“Defensively we did well.
“It is good that we did not concede and we know how the group looks like because Nigeria won on Tuesday.
“They are top of the group and we are playing them in the next match.
“It is going to be a different Nigeria compared to the one that we played away.
“So‚ we are aware of the challenge that is upon us and we have to do it ourselves as a team against them.
“Against Seychelles at FNB Stadium‚ we did well by scoring many goals but unfortunately we did not score playing away.
“Nigeria is a different team and we are looking forward to that challenge.
“We saw how they played in their last match and probably the coach will have a different plan because we used a different plan against Seychelles away from home.”