South Africa - Lesotho Preview: Crocodiles seek third place finish

Lesotho’s strong run in the Cosafa Cup could threaten a young Bafana Bafana side during the competition’s 3rd/4th playoff

South Africa will face a confident Lesotho outfit during the Cosafa Cup 3rd/4th playoff at the Levy Nwanawasa Stadium on Saturday.    

Both teams were unlucky to not make the semi-final stage of the competition, after the Crocodiles were edged out by Zimbabwe, and Bafana Bafana lost to hosts Zambia in the lottery of a penalty shootout.

Lesotho have enjoyed a unprecedented run in this year’s competition, earning the tag of giant killers after overcoming Kenya and Botswana in the group stages and defeating Angola in the quarter-finals.

South Africa beat Namibia 2-1 in a tight encounter to reach the semi-final stage. The semi-final against Zambia should have ended in victory for Bafana Bafana, but they spurned numerous chances and eventually lost a penalty shootout against the host 5-3.

The match will give South Africa coach Gordon Igesund another chance to test his reserve players. Lesotho should prove to be a tough opponent for Igesund’s youthful side, with consistent striker Tshepo Tale the player to watch out for.

  • South Africa and Lesotho played a friendly match in Maseru earlier this year, where Bafana Bafana finished 2-0 victors.
  • Tlou Segolela scored both goals in the warm-up match for 2014 World Cup qualification.

  • South Africa have a wholly different squad for this Cosafa Cup encounter, with only Katlego Mashego and Wayne Sandilands enduring members of the team which played in Maseru.

  • Bafana Bafana have won the Cosafa Cup on three occasions.

  • Lesotho were runners-up in the 2000 edition of the Cosafa Cup, their finest performance to date in the competition.

  • Leslie Notsi was appointed as coach of the Crocodiles in 2009 and is one of the longest serving coaches on the African continent.