Stuart Baxter "armed with information" after Cosafa Castle Cup
Posted: 8 July 2017 Time: 15:10
Bafana Bafana coach Stuart Baxter said he is "armed with information" following the team's participation at the Cosafa Castle Cup.
An experimental Bafana squad placed fifth at the competition after winning the Plate final with a 1-0 victory over neighbours Namibia at Moruleng Stadium in the North West on Friday.
Baxter's men previously beat Botswana 2-0 on Tuesday, having been eliminated from the tournament at the first hurdle with a 1-0 defeat to Tanzania in the quarter-finals.
“Right now I am armed with information and that was the intention. Those who watched the games will agree that the boys worked very hard and tried their best. Now it’s up to the technical staff to see where do they fit into the programme, and what more experience do we give them. The CHAN qualifiers will be more similar to this without players from abroad,” said Baxter, who used 19 of the 21 selected players, with only goalkeeper Darren Johnson and midfielder Sibongakonke Mbatha not getting a run in the event.
Baxter singled out defender Sandile Mthethwa for praise following his efforts against the Namibians.
“All the information is useful especially in terms of the collective, but in terms of individuals maybe I don’t know a lot more than I knew. One good sight tonight [Friday] was young Sandile coming in and doing very well. I don’t like singling players out - he slotted into a back four that was under constant pressure but he stood his ground nicely. So yes, there is some useful information that we got, but I think they all have a lot of hard work to do.”
Meanwhile, the Brit hopes to field a competitive side in a CHAN qualifier with Botswana next month.
“The clubs understand the difference between the two competitions. Unfortunately, CHAN comes at a time when the PSL clubs are starting their pre-season training, but we will freshen up the team and I think it will be decent team. The challenge for us is that we have to start all over again in terms of the delivery of information,” said Baxter.
The first leg against Botswana will be played in Francistown on Saturday, 16 July, with the return leg scheduled for a week later at Moruleng Stadium. Kick-off is at 15h00.