Bafana remain favourites for Afcon 2013

JOHANNESBURG - Very few Zimbabweans must have followed the 2013 African Nations Cup draw which took place in Durban on Wednesday.

To many, the draw was a stark reminder of the Luanda disappointment, which to many was too hard to swallow and is only starting to sink now.

It is a fact that Zimbabwe will not be part of this proud African jamboree but life has to go on. We cannot sit back and mourn forever.

Having said that, the draw itself was a masterpiece, something that Mzansi has become accustomed to when it comes to hosting world-class sporting tournaments.

There are no half measures when the country hosts any sporting event.

They make everything world class.

Group A will consist of the hosts, Angola, Morocco and Cape Verde while Group B is made up of Ghana, Mali, DR Congo and Niger. Group C comprises defending champions Zambia, Nigeria, Burkina Faso and Ethiopia while Ivory Coast, Tunisia, Algeria and Togo complete Group D.

While it is too early to predict what will happen in January and February next year, the buzz has already started and from the vibe going on here, Bafana will be favourites to win this one.

Some people might start asking, what strong stuff I have smoked or taken this early, but history is on Bafana to repeat the 1996 feat.

Given, the past few years have been close to a disaster for Bafana but since the sacking of Pitso Mosimane and subsequent appointment of Gordon Igesund, this team has been galloping to take its rightful place on the global sporting showpiece.

Having played Brazil and losing narrowly in Sao Paulo, Bafana have been showing some glimpses of their former self. In their last game against the Harambee Stars of Kenya, Bafana bossed the hosts around and had it not been for Kenya’s brilliant goalkeeper on the night, the score line could easily have gone into double figures.

That 2-1 final result was truly not a real reflection of how Bafana ran rings around the Harambee Stars.

Those who also watched Bafana lose 1-0 to Poland will be the first to admit that they were denied a clear equaliser in the dying minutes by some dubious officiating.

Bafana should easily negotiate their Group without too many hassles. Cape Verde have been on the rise but their away record is not the best. The same goes with Angola and Morocco; they are both poor travellers and should be an easy meat for the hungry home side.

There is a possibility of Bafana then meeting Ghana or any other team in Group B but with the home side supporters blowing their vuvuzelas, get it from me ladies and gentlemen, no one is likely going to stop Bafana from going all the way.

In short, the local side has a very shrewd coach, passionate crowd and has already been promised big money if they make the country proud and capture this prized title.

Without discounting other teams, the qualifying matches have shown that other participants are comfortable only on their home turfs and develop jelly feet on the road.

I see history repeating itself. Bafana are going to win this one.

It’s unfortunate our own Warriors will once again miss this one which will take place just across the border and will be content watching action from the comfort of their homes. What a pity! - Tinotenda Panashe

*Tinotenda Panashe is our South Africa-based columnist and correspondent. He can be contacted by email at Tinotenda.Panashe@gmail.com.

Comments (1)

Bafana? Hahahahahahahahahaahahahahahahahahahahahahaha! What a joke! And you honestly belief what you are writing? C'mon man, be serious!

VaMutikizizi - 27 October 2012

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