25 September 2018 –South Africa’s national under-17 women squad (Bantwana) kicked off their Spain tour on a positive note after beating UD Levante Under-17 side 4-2 in their first friendly of their eight-day stay in Valencia, Spain. The match took place on 24 September 2018.

Bantwana coach Simphiwe Dludlu said she was pleased with how her charges performed on the night, adding that her players showed great character on the pitch.

“I am really happy with how the girls performed,” Dludlu said. “They showed great character in how they conducted themselves as a unit on the pitch. We gave Levante no respect in that game. And that is the kind of attitude we (the technical staff) are looking for in their individual performances because that will be crucial when we go to this year’s FIFA Under-17 Women’s World Cup in Uruguay.

“It was a good performance and we just have to continue building from it.”

Bantwana’s four goals all came in the second period of the match with Lonathemba Mhlongo scoring a brace with Karabo Dhlamini and Miche Minnies, each finding the back of the net once.

Dludlu stated she was pleased that her side was able to maintain shape from the back moving forward, while also creating a good number of scoring chances.

Bantwana will now face Valencia Under-20s on 26 September before they fly back to South Africa on 29 September 2018.

Dludlu said she is expecting tougher encounter from their next opponents.

“We will be playing against Valencia’s Under-20s in our next match and I am expecting a very tough battle from them,” Dludlu said. “They are a bit older than our under-17 girls and we are looking forward to the challenge. It will stretch our players even more and that is what we want as the technical staff.”

NB: SAFA partnered with LaLiga to make this Spain tour for World Cup bound Bantwana possible