Refiloe Jane: Nigeria is not the only team in the Women’s AFCON

by Chibuogwu Nnadiegbulam, AIPS Young Reporter, Nigeria

CAPE COAST, November 20, 2018 – Vice-captain of the South Africa Women’s National Team, Refiloe Jane explained at a pre-match press conference on Tuesday that beating Nigeria is just a means to an end, not an end in itself.

Banyana Banyana on Sunday enjoyed a famous 1-0 victory over the eight-time champions in their opening match of the 2018 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations, but have refused to let the feat become a distraction from their ultimate goal. After all defeating the Super Falcons does not guarantee more than three points.

“Yes we won against Nigeria,” Jane said. “It’s a good feeling for us and it’s also a motivation booster going into the next game because you know playing Nigeria is never easy. But as the coach has said we’ve put them behind us, we need to prepare for the upcoming games because Nigeria is not the only team in the tournament. There are still teams that we need to play and make sure that we get past them.”

Indeed, defeating the most successful women’s football team on the continent will amount to nothing if South Africa fail to qualify for the World Cup at least, so there is a bigger fish to fry.

Equatorial Guinea is up next for Banyana Banyana and there is no better time to punish the Nzalang Nacional than now that Zambia have exposed their vulnerability. Both sides have met five times before in the tournament with South Africa having the edge only once. Even more notably is the fact that Equatorial Guinea have denied South Africa the Women’s AFCON title twice.

Asides booking a place in the last four, beating the only two champions the Women’s AFCON has ever had will be a testament to South Africa’s constant growth.

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