17 September 2021 – Banyana Banyana coach Desiree Ellis believes staying true to their style of play will be key for the team when South Africa face Ghana in the Aisha Buhari Cup later today, Friday 17 September at Mobolaji Johnson Stadium in Lagos, Nigeria. The match will kick-off at 16h00.
Ellis expressed her excitement with the tournament which she believes will be a good test for the upcoming COSAFA Cup tournament and well as the AWCON qualifiers.
Banyana Banyana’s squad is a fusion of locally based players and those plying their trade abroad.
“We had two days to work with everyone and we felt with the time we had, there was a bit of gelling. More days would have been great, we just wanted to make sure that everyone gets a feel of the ball and that what we have done,” said Ellis.
“However there is nothing much we can do now, it’s all about executing the plan for the match against Ghana.
“We had a training session for the local based players in South Africa and the overseas players only joined the training yesterday and today due to long travel. However, they have been playing where they are at their respective clubs and as you could pick up from the first training session there was a bit of understanding. They have played before with each other and against each other. The transition has been better than what I expected,” added Ellis.
For the first time Banyana Banyana will have more than one captain as coach Desiree Ellis aims to equip more leaders in the team.
“We are trying to build a group of leaders so we have more than one captain. We have Janine Van Wyk, Refiloe Jane, Thembi Kgatlana and Mamello Makhabane as possible leaders and Andile is unfortunately not available. We are trying to build more leaders and this group will be lead the team going forward,” said Ellis.
“If we don’t build more leaders, we are going to fall short and that is the whole idea of having more than one captain,” concluded Ellis.