Ngezana: No easy teams in World Cup
Posted: 14 March 2017 Time: 15:15
Amajita defender Siyabonga Ngezana expressed his delight at qualifying for the 2017 FIFA Under-20 World Cup in South Korea, and anticipates a tough draw on Wednesday.
Amajita will be amongst 24 teams, including fellow CAF U-20 Youth Championships semi-finalists Zambia, Senegal and Guinea, to have qualified for the final tournament set to run from May 20 to June 11.
Ngezana, who currently plies his club football with the Kaizer Chiefs Multichoice Diski Challenge team, was delighted to have achieved their target of qualifying for the World Cup but admitted his disappointment at their fourth-place finish.
“Our prime goal was to qualify for the World Cup,” the 19-year-old told his club's website. "A second goal we had set for ourselves was to make history and win the Africa Cup of Nations, but that wasn’t to be.”
The centre-back missed out on the team's first four matches, and only managed one appearance in Lusaka, when they lost to Guinea in the bronze medal match, but relished the experience from the bench.
“You actually learn a lot by just sitting on the bench and watching," he added. "It was amazing to see the desire, the hunger and the winning mentality of all the players.
"Also, the immense intensity of the matches, there were no easy opponents. Every game was like a final.”
With South Africa in pot 4 of the World Cup draw, they could be pitted against one or more of the heavyweights such as Germany, Argentina or Italy in their group.
However, Ngezana says they are prepared for the toughest possible group as that's what the World Cup is all about.
“I am not worried about which other countries will be in our group. We are mentally prepared for any team, there are only good teams at the World Cup,” he concluded.