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Football | Super Eagles

Victor Moses

Baxter bent on containing triple threat

South Africa coach Stuart Baxter is leaving no stone unturned to see that his side achieve a result against the Super Eagles of Nigeria.

Bafana Bafana will travel to Nigeria for a 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier on 10 June at the Godswill Akpabio International Stadium in Uyo.

Baxter, who is into his second spell as coach of the South African senior side, has already started making plans to neutralise Nigeria as he has been studying the tapes of Nigerian stars abroad.

The likes of Kelechi Iheanacho, Alex Iwobi and Victor Moses got special mention from the Bafana coach, who also revealed he has been reading Nigerian newspapers to get a feel for how they are thinking.

Baxter wants to take a look at Nigeria’s last three games and break it down to give him an idea of how the Super Eagles will set up for the clash.

Nigeria have been a bogey team for South Africa as Bafana have only defeated Nigeria once in competitive games. The last time the two teams met, Nigeria forced South Africa to a 2-2 draw in Uyo in a 2015 Afcon qualifier.

Baxter will look to change all that as he begins his second stint with Bafana. He is looking at combining both youth and experience as he continues to develop the squad.

“We want to keep an element of development there all the time, and I don’t want to regress. We are going to have to look at players that have come in and ask if we should throw them in the deep end in Nigeria or should he be on the bench, or just in the squad and have a learning curve,” Baxter told IOL.

“I think those that are going to have to play are the ones that have been there and done it, but I don’t’ mean we suddenly start bringing back Morgan Gould (34), although he’s been fantastic, but we need players with experience, like Dean Furman for example and Itumeleng Khune will also be important in these sort of games.” he added.

Apart from surmounting the Nigerian hurdle, South Africa will also have to do battle with other 2019 Afcon group E opponents Seychelles and Libya.


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