Mannetti eager to decide Bafana's group

Namibia coach Ricardo Mannetti has downplayed his side’s chances of progressing through their AFCON group but is keen to play a decisive role in who does.

In a group featuring Ivory Coast, South Africa and Morocco, the Brave Warriors find themselves contesting what has widely been dubbed ‘the group of death’.

Having suffered a defeat in their opening match against the Atlas Lions, they next face Bafana Bafana on Friday before tussling with The Elephants in their final clash next week.

The 111th-ranked side are certainly not stretching their imaginations in their targets, with Mannetti humbly expressing his content with “playing the draw”.

“Look the purpose of us coming, I’ve mentioned it a couple of times, and we know our strengths; we know our weaknesses,” explained Mannetti.

“You cannot come into an African Nations Cup after a 11-12-year [absence] – you’re already in a group of death – and then expect to talk about getting out of the group, second-round or quarterfinals.

“I think in this group, as far as I’m concerned, we will play a very important role in deciding who will go through – that should be quoted please. We will play the draw, and we are happy [to be the ones] playing the draw.”

The top two sides from each of the six groups will progress to the knockout stage and will be joined by the four best-placed third teams to comprise the Round of 16.

Bafana, having lost to Cote d’Ivoire in their opener on Monday, will be targeting at least a best-third place spot, needing at least a convincing win over Namibia.