Namibia’s Under-20 football team the Young Warriors have promised to leave their best on the pitch when they go toe to toe with eternal rivals South Africa in the decisive 2nd leg of the 2017 CAF U/20 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers at the giant FNB Stadium, near Soweto, Johannesburg on Saturday at 14h00.
The two nations met a fortnight ago with the tie ending in a disappointing goalless stalemate at the Sam Nujoma Stadium in Windhoek – leaving both teams with the mammoth task of settling for nothing less than a victory.
Head coach Gerald Guther is a man possessed and says his boys will bring their A game to the party and try to get something out of the fixture.
The often temperamental mentor admitted that the hosts are favourites but was quick to acknowledge that it is important for the Namibians to keep their heads up and remain confident in the belief that after the draw at home anything can happen, but cautioned his charges to be careful not to allow any space to the hosts.
Gunther takes stock of the fact the hosts will be stronger having added seven new members to their squad, which is a clear indication of their approach towards Saturday’s do or die clash.
“This clearly shows that they want to win but we will not go there just to participate – we are going to compete and try to get ourselves over the line. It will be a tough game and we have to dig deep in terms of concentration, energy and tactical awareness. We have been working on those aspects and should be ready to ruffle feathers,” Guther states.
Guther has added two new players to the squad with utility defender Given Mutuezu and acrobatic shot stopper Kelvin Spiegel coming in to add steel as cover for the regulars. The team flew out to Johannesburg yesterday.
The travelling squad reads as follows: Vipua Tjimune, Kennedy Eib, Baloyi Tsandib, Johannes Kwedhi, Giovanni Nauseb, Katiti Hakuria, Pandeni Kandjabanga, Romeo Kasume, Boni Paulino, Hiha Katjivena, Petrus Kamati, Anthony Kham, Alli Klokoski, George Hummel, Jandjamuje Maharero, Mirko Wolff, Reginald “Kokorot” Willemse, McCartney Nawaseb, Venovineja Tjikundi, Kelvin Spiegel and Given Mutuezu.