Baxter to ring the changes?


After suffering defeat in their opening AFCON 2019 Group D fixture, Bafana Bafana coach Stuart Baxter could opt for a new-look midfield for the must-win clash against Namibia.

South Africa suffered a narrow defeat in their opening game against Ivory Coast at Egypt 2019, with Jonathan Kodjia scoring the only goal of the game in the blazing heat at Al Salam stadium on Monday afternoon.

While Baxter's side showed signs of tactical awareness and structure against the Ivorians, there was a lack of attacking impetus and chances created for attacking duo Percy Tau and Lebo Mothiba in a narrow 4-2-3-1 formation.

With Dean Furman ruled out of tonight’s clash as earlier reported, Hlompho Kekana is likely to get the nod with Amiens midfielder Bongani Zungu possibly partnering him at the expense of Kamohelo Mokotjo.

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Zungu confirmed to that he's ready to contribute to the national team after his questionable selection, given his injury troubles with Amiens this season.

"I've worked really hard behind the scenes for this, I'm humbled to be here and I feel good, I feel fit and I'm ready if I get an opportunity - hopefully I get a chance," he said in the build-up to the match.

Meanwhile, Lebogang Maboe could also be one to drop out the starting XI despite an industrious display on the right-wing earlier this week, with his Mamelodi Sundowns teammate Sibusiso Vilakazi, who was a second-half substitute against the Elephants ready to earn his first start at the continental showpiece.

Having earlier explained the surprise selection of Ronwen Williams in the opening tie, given his suitability to the condition against Ivory Coast, Darren Keet could return in goal to bolster the defensive communication with his former Bidvest Wits teammates.

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Kick-off of the clash at the Al Salam Stadium is scheduled for 22h00 (SA time).

Predicted starting XI: Keet, Mkhize, Hlatshwayo, Mkhwanazi, Hlanti, Kekana, Zungu, Vilakazi, Zwane, Mothiba, Tau.