Stuart Baxter wants to make Bafana Bafana difficult to beat

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The Bafana mentor was delighted with Tau's performance as he rescued a draw against the South American side on Tuesday

South Africa national team coach Stuart Baxter has hailed the performance of Percy Tau following his man of the match performance against Paraguay.

Tau struck in injury time to ensure that Bafana earned a 1-1 draw after falling behind and subsequently shared the Nelson Mandela Challenge trophy.

“The combination between Lebo and Percy Tau looks very interesting. I think Percy has been on fire the last two games [for Bafana] but when he first went to Belgium I think it took him a little bit of time to clear his head," Baxter told SuperSport TV.

“He had a little patch where he was doubtful, but the clouds have cleared now and we’re seeing sunshine,” he explained.

Meanwhile, Baxter also admitted that Paraguay’s aggression proved to be a real test for Bafana.

Following the national team’s draw against Nigeria on the weekend, Bafana’s fate now lies on them avoiding defeat in their final Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Libya, and Baxter revealed that the objective on the night was to make his side hard to beat.

“On the game itself I don’t think we’re used to playing against a team that shows so much aggression. They were very ready for this game. It was going back to school for a lot of our players,” Baxter added.

“Pleasing as it was we learned that when we moved the ball quickly and got into spaces playing our game we gave them problems as well,” he continued. 

“I said to the players before we went out that if this is a preparation for Libya then we have to make sure that we are difficult to beat,” he revealed.

“And if we keep going and make sure that we learn from our mistakes and we’re tight and never give up then that’s the first step in being difficult to beat,” he said.

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“I made some changes and mixed it up a little bit but the boys kept on going and I think we were really unlucky that we didn’t score before [Percy scored late],” he elaborated.

“Yes, they had big chances. We made bad decisions on transitions, that’s their game. But we gave as good as we got and with a better luck we could have got a goal bit earlier,” he concluded.

 

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