Malawi vs South Sudan : 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualification matches were organized by the Central Malawi vs South Sudan Live Confederation of African Football (CAF) to decide the participating teams of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations, the 32nd edition of the international men’s football championship of Africa 2019 Africa Cup of Nations known as the Total 2019 Africa Cup of Nations for sponsorship reasons, was the 32nd edition Check out the schedule and live results : Africa Cup of Nations Qualification 2019 on Eurosport.
Ghana start their 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying campaign at home to South Africa in their first competitive match since disappointingly losing on penalties against Tunisia in the last 16 at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt last July.
They have an excellent record of qualifying for the finals having only failed to do so on one occasion since 1990 and are the highest ranked team in a group also containing Sudan and Sao Tome and Principe.
Coach Kwesi Appiah has called up seven new faces to his squad including Spanish based players Mohammed Salisu of Real Valladolid and Real Mallorca’s Iddrisu Baba. The Ayew brothers Jordan and team captain Andre are in the squad and are both expected to start.
South Africa face their toughest challenge of their qualifying group first up as they travel to face group favourites Ghana in their opening match of the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying campaign.
They had a good run to the quarter-finals at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations final tournament in Egypt where they produced an shock 1-0 win against the host nation in the last 16. In the next game, they lost in heart-breaking fashion against Nigeria with a late winning goal deciding the match.
South Africa are without the injured Themba Zwane but Sifiso Hlanti and Thamsanqa Mkhize both return to the squad after missing their last friendly match against Mali through injury.
Expectations will be high for Ghana as they start their qualifying campaign against South Africa, who are likely to be their closest rivals in the group, though with two spots up for grabs they are both expected to earn qualification ahead of Sudan and Sao Tome and Principe. The South African coach has stated how he sees a point as a good result and it would be no shock if they played with a defensive mindset with the onus on Ghana to break them down. Recent matches between these two nations have been very close and a low scoring draw is the prediction.
South Africa will face a stern test of their credentials when they open their 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualification campaign with a clash away to Group C rivals Ghana on Thursday night. The match is set to kick-off at 9pm CAT at the Cape Coast Sports Stadium.
This match will be a first competitive fixture for new Bafana Bafana coach Molefi Ntseki, though his team brings some momentum into the clash following their 2-1 home win over Mali in the Nelson Mandela Challenge match played last month.
Ntseki was part of former coach Stuart Baxter’s technical team and looking to build on the foundation laid by his predecessor, with hopes high that South Africa can slowly begin a return to being considered one of the continent’s football powerhouses.
The new coach has warned that the attacking prowess on display against Mali is unlikely to be repeated against Ghana: “We have to be very careful. Starting on the front foot can get us an early goal, and unsettle Ghana in Ghana,” he explained.
“But at the same time if you give Ghana too much possession they can easily hurt you. They are at home, they will have the support and the confidence. So it’s a game where one has to be very cautious.”
On the other side, the pressure is high on coach James Kwesi Appiah, who needs a strong showing against Bafana Bafana (and a good qualification campaign overall) to keep his spot as Black Stars boss.
Captain Andre Ayew has has called for the team to shrug off their recent lack of playing time (Ghana’s full senior team has not been active in the past two international windows) and begin the road to Cameroon 2021 on a positive note.
“We have to make sure we start this qualification series really well so we are preparing for this game against South Africa on Thursday,” the Swansea player explained.
He added, “The last two international breaks we didn’t have international games so that’s a bit hard for us because we haven’t been together as a team for a while. That’s not an excuse, our job is to get three points at home. We know it’s going to be a difficult game at home but this week we will make sure we start the qualifiers well.”
In head-to-head stats, Ghana and South Africa have met in 12 previous matches. Bafana Bafana have claimed four wins compared to three for the Black Stars, while five games have been drawn.
The teams met in a friendly ahead of the 2019 Afcon back in June. The match, played in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates as part of the teams’ preparations for the tournament in Egypt, ended in a goalless stalemate. Ghana’s last home match against SA – a World Cup qualifier way back in June 2004 – ended in a 3-0 win for the West Africans heavyweights.
Cape Town – Bafana Bafana are desperate to return to South Africa with a positive result, says midfielder Dean Furman.
The national team are currently in Ghana preparing to take on the Black Stars as the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifying campaign kicks off this week.
In Group C, Bafana Bafana are accompanied by Ghana, Sudan and the lowly ranked São Tomé and Príncipe.
On Thursday, November 14 Ghana welcomes Molefi Ntseki’s Bafana Bafana charges to the Cape Coast Sports Stadium.
The match starts at 21:00 (SA time).
“There is a clean bill of health. Everyone is looking forward to playing,” said Furman ahead of the much-anticipated fixture.
“I think tonight is going to be a very important (training) session, so we can acclimatise and get used to the heat and the environment.
“Hopefully, (we) get to work on some tactics because it is going to be a very difficult game.”
During the 2019 AFCON qualifying campaign, South Africa qualified from Group E without any defeat along with African giants Nigeria.
Bafana Bafana beat the Super Eagles 2-0 in Uyo courtesy of goals from Tokelo Rantie and Percy Tau.
Furman believes that the away victory against Nigeria worked in Bafana’s favour and hopes that they can inflict similar damage against the Black Stars in Ghana.
“We’re definitely looking to come away with something. A win would be fantastic, and a point would be a great result because Ghana are also a top nation on this continent with some great players,” said Furman.
“We want to come away with something. We’ve travelled long and hard to get here. We want something to show for our efforts.
“We want to get off to a good start and then come home. I think our home form is going to be key for us in qualification.”
Earlier this year at the 2019 AFCON in Egypt, Bafana shocked the world in knocking out the host nation in the last 16.
That victory came under the tutelage of Stuart Baxter, who has since resigned as head coach.
The Ghana clash will be Ntseki’s second match in charge since his interim gig was made permanent by the South African Football Association (SAFA) in August.
His first official match in the dugout was a 2-1 victory over Mali in the Nelson Mandela Challenge last month.
Furman claims that Bafana Bafana’s progress at AFCON earlier this year along with the win over Mali has signaled to the rest of the continent that South Africa are a “force to be reckoned with”.
“That’s got to be the attitude going into this game (against Ghana). We don’t want to fear them,” Furman continued.
“We give them respect but we certainly believe that on our day we’re a match for anyone and can cause anyone problems.”