The national team landed in East London on Sunday afternoon following their friendly international victory the day before, where a crowd of fans had gathered to give their heroes a warm welcome.
And Da Gama feels that show of belief from the supporters will go a long way in inspiring Bafana in the future, starting against Angola in the Eastern Cape city on Tuesday [19h00 kickoff].
“It is always pleasing to know that there are people who will give us such a rousing welcome,” said Da Gama on SAFA's official website.
“This gives us the confidence to continue to do well in our second match against Angola. This is somewhat an indication that the fans will come in numbers to the stadium to see their heroes up close and personal. We really appreciate that they have sacrificed their Sunday afternoon to come and welcome us, and we will have to repay them with another good display on Tuesday.”
Looking back over this weekend’s win, where Kermit Erasmus, Percy Tau and Andile Jali were all on target for Bafana, Da Gama said: “It was very difficult to choose a team in the first place. You want to give players a chance to play but also you want to get the right combinations, and we wanted to play the type of soccer that suits South African players.
“But we were happy with the combinations we saw in this match. It just shows the rich talent we have in this country. There’s obviously still a lot of hard work to do ahead. And we will make more changes in the second match, the two youngsters will play – Phakamani Mahlamb and Luther Singh – because we have to be brave enough to give them a chance, it’s the only way we can move forward. So we were very happy with the exercise against Guinea-Bissau.
“We created a lot of chances and we could have put some away but we did not. You saw what Percy Tau did, he was a marvel to watch. Another player is Kamohelo Mokotjo – one of the players in the squad said he would pay to watch him play – now for a player to say that means there is a lot of quality in this team. I was very happy with the performance and how the players applied themselves.”