1 September 2017 – Midfielder Keagan Dolly said it was imperative for Bafana Bafana to win on Friday, here in Praia, Cape Verde to take a firm grip of the Group which also involves West African giants Senegal and Burkina Faso.
The speedy Montpellier midfielder said while all games that Bafana Bafana play were critical, this particular one was more important as a win will set a thrilling finish in the Group.
“All games we play are critical but this one on Friday is probably one of the biggest because we all know what a win will do to the rest of the campaign,” he said.
Dolly said the team was now united for one cause and the unity was what was propelling this group to achieve things.
“It all started in Nigeria and we are really getting used to each other. We have a good balance of experience and youth and we work for each other. There is lots of vibrancy in the camp and that is what is needed when you go for such assignments.”
The former Mamelodi Sundowns midfielder-cum-striker said every player knew what the coaching staff wanted from the team and would love to deliver for the nation on Friday.
“We are also happy that Tokelo Rantie has finally joined with the rest of the squad and it’s now all systems go. We are playing away from home and the fact that Cape Verde have nothing to lose, they can be tricky customers; just to spoil the party,” said Dolly.
“But we are well prepared for the task at hand. We just need to tackle this game the way we did against Nigeria and the rest will fall into place,” added Dolly who said the technical staff was comprised of people all players respected.
“Most of those surrounding us within the technical team are people who we looked up to during their playing days,” he said referring to the likes of Quinton Fortune, Andre Arendse and Aaron Mokoena who are all with the team in different capacities.
Meanwhile, Bongani Zungu who plays for Vitoria Guimares in Portugal said the entire team was ready for Friday’s encounter regardless of who was selected in the starting line up.
“We all know Cape Verde won’t be easy; they are underdogs but we just need to be positive and execute our own strategies. What is imperative is that we all know what three points would do for the rest of the campaign,” said Zungu who is expected to partner with Dolly and Dean Furman in the heart of the midfield.
Zungu lauded coach Stuart Baxter and his technical staff for their professional approach and focus.
“There has been a huge difference in how the whole team approaches things and the lads have really embraced that philosophy.
Bafana Bafana play Cape Verde at 20h30 SA time on Friday at Estadio Nacional in which a win might take them to the summit of the standings as Senegal welcome Burkina Faso in another encounter in Dakar on Saturday.