Ntseki proud of his U-17 boys
Posted: 30 July 2018 Time: 11:30
National Under-17 coach Molefi Ntseki admits that his players were a bit anxious in their COSAFA Cup final against Angola at Stade St Francois Xavier in Port Louis, Mauritius on Sunday.
The Angolans were crowned champions following their 1-0 victory, thanks to a goal from Osvaldo Capemba. By winning the competition, the Southern African country have qualified for the 2019 African Under-17 Championships which will be played in Tanzania.
Amajimbos finished top of Group B to qualify for the semi-finals, where they beat hosts Mauritius to progress to the final. Ntseki's boys, however, could not get the better of Angola in the tournament decider.
“We had a very good plan for the game, but I think we were a bit anxious because we felt that we had gone through all the challenges, especially in this tournament,” Ntseki said after the game.
“The first match we played a draw, which was disappointing. The second match we played Mozambique and we won 4-1. But when we were leading, they scored a goal which was scary for us. We did well to contain ourselves and keep scoring goals [in that game]. The third game was against Zambia, which was a tough one. They scored first, but we came back very well because we did not drop our heads.”
He continued: “And even today [in the final], we conceded and we felt that it’s nothing new for us and we would always come back. But I think at this age group we are struggling in terms of our mental and physical endurance. But I think the boys did well despite their mistakes. You can always expect such mistakes from a 16-year-old or 15-year-old because these are not full-time professionals. They did their best, unfortunately it was not our day.”