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Libya v South Africa

Calvin Marlin tips Ronwen Williams to start for Bafana Bafana against Libya

9:30 PM GMT+8 22/03/2019
Darren Keet and Ronwen Williams Bafana Bafana 2018
The experienced goalkeeper coach has backed the Matsatsantsa goalkeeper to start against the Mediterranean Knights

Former Bafana Bafana goalkeeper Calvin Marlin admits that coach Stuart Baxter faces a tough selection headache in the goalkeeping department as they meet Libya on Sunday, but he believes that Ronwen Williams is ready to start.

The absence of Itumeleng Khune has left Baxter with Williams and Darren Keet as the two experienced goalkeepers to start in their final Group E match of the 2019 Caf African Cup of Nations qualifiers.

“Well, it’s a tough one, I agree because both goalkeepers have never been in such situations before at that level,” Marlin told Goal.

“However, I think Ronwen is the one to start for me; that is my personal feeling and because of his form at club level,” he said.

With both net-minders currently serving as number one keepers at their respective clubs, Marlin has tipped the Tshwane giants’ No.1 to have an advantage.

“Yes, Keet has been in tough situations overseas, but based on current form, I think Ronwen has done well for SuperSport because they win by 1-0 and keeping a clean sheet brings confidence to keepers,” responded the goalkeeper coach.

Although both keepers have the required experience at international level, Marlin admits that relying on one goalkeeper leads to problems for the national team.

This comes after Khune was ruled out of the clash due to a shoulder injury and could come back at the end of the PSL season.

“On the other hand, the headache will definitely come in when you keep the same keeper for about 10 years and not giving the others a chance,” he continued.

“We all know Khune’s quality, but I think we needed to share the responsibility and allow the other keepers to gain experience,” he said.

Speaking about the importance of qualifying for this year’s continental tournament, the Ajax Cape Town goalkeeper coach says he hopes things work out for the national side in Tunisia.

“Look, we definitely need a good result on Sunday there is no doubt that. I think the only issue we are having is the concern in the goalkeeping department,” reacted the Urban Warriors mentor.

“I think Ronwen has matured and if you look at his performances against the big teams, he comes up with great saves and he contributes a lot as far as their dominance when it comes to trophies in the past few years,” he said.

“We need to believe that we can get a good result on Sunday, but it will not be easy. We need to turn things around because we have been saying the same for the past 20 years that Bafana are going to challenge for honours,” said Marlin.

“However, I believe this is a new team and new beginnings and I hope things will work out because we need to go to the Afcon tournament. We will need to stick together as a team and turn things around,” he concluded.