After a slow start to their 2019 Africa Cup of Nations campaign, Bafana Bafana are finally hitting their stride, according to head coach Stuart Baxter.
During the Group Stage, Bafana were less than convincing and tasted two defeats, only progressed by virtue of being one of the four best third-placed teams.
However, their form mattered little against Egypt, as Bafana produced a performance which Baxter could only describe as ‘one of the biggest results South Africa have had in Afcon’ as they bundled the Pharaohs out of the competition.
Nonetheless, speaking after the match where Thembinkosi Lorch stole the show with a late goal, Baxter reflected on his side’s initial struggles, suggesting it was down to a lack of adequate preparation before the tournament,
“So really we’ve been preparing in Afcon. So now I think the players are moving forward, we are learning. I think at the moment, we are in a good space."
The win over Egypt has subsequently set up a meeting with familiar foes Nigeria, and Baxter is relishing the opportunity to come up against a team who they faced in the qualifiers for Afcon 2019.
“It's a difficult game, Nigeria, they came back from 2-1 down (against Cameroon) to win 3-2 so that shows character.
“They scored three goals which means they are dangerous. We know Nigeria because we played against them in the qualification.
“I think both Nigeria and South Africa will think that they can win so it will be a good game for the spectators."