Hlanti: This draw killed us

Posted: 11 September 2018 Time: 20:00

Bafana Bafana left-back Sifiso Hlanti says blaming individuals will not help the national team's situation in qualifying for major tournaments.

Bafana left many South Africans disappointed on Saturday with their goalless draw against Libya, who looked more like the home team in a 2019 AFCON qualifier at Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban.

"Eish my brother, we are also not happy as players," Hlanti tells KickOff.com.

"We expected to win even though it wasn't going to be easy. So the draw wasn't good enough for us. The more you collect points in these qualifiers, the more things get easy. Unfortunately in the weekend game it didn't happen. It hurts, especially to us because if you remember that we didn't qualify for the World Cup. We want to qualify for AFCON. But we are still positive, it's a bigger challenge for us because this draw killed us.

"Nothing is easy in football, blaming people won't help because whoever was chosen to be in the starting line-up it's because of his qualities. So we won't take that [away] from those players and the technical staff as well. We just need to keep going.

"The way I see things, I won't blame the change of weather and what, what. We just didn't get clear chances of going forward you see. We were trying but it didn't work out for us. That's why the coach ended up putting in [Bradley] Grobler because we were looking more dangerous when we used [the] sides. So that showed we lacked numbers in the box."

Bafana, with four points from two matches in Group E, next face struggling Seychelles in back-to-back qualifiers next month. The islanders are without a point having conceded eight goals in their two matches, but Hlanti is wary of allowing complacency to creep in.

"I respect this game of football, nothing is easy. Sometimes we don't see things the same way you see, but the more you respect other things in football they become easier. We need to stay positive and work hard. It doesn't mean we should undermine them just because they have conceded seven [eight] goals. We have a job to do against Seychelles. By not conceding a goal, I think what we should be concerned with is to go forward and create more chances because goals are very important."

Article by: Sipho Mlotha

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