COSAFA CUP: Bafana Bafana’s performance falls short in a goalless draw with Botswana

Bafana Bafana played to a goalless draw against Botswana in their 2024 COSAFA Cup encounter at the Isaac Wolfson Stadium in Gqeberha on Saturday afternoon.

The disappointing result marks South Africa’s second consecutive draw in the competition.

The match started with an early opportunity for Thabang Matuludi, whose header from a set-piece in the 8th minute went wide.

Botswana responded swiftly with Olebogeng Ramotse’s free-kick just outside the South African box in the 10th minute, which narrowly sailed over the crossbar, leaving goalkeeper Mondli Mpoto rooted to the spot.

Malebogo Modise attempted a long-range strike from a set-piece in the 22nd minute, prompting a crucial save from Botswana’s Victor James.

Despite these early exchanges, the first half remained largely uneventful.

Botswana’s Tlamelo Kolagano nearly broke the deadlock in the 62nd minute, but Mpoto’s quick reaction kept the score level.

In the 85th minute, Asenele Velebayi delivered a cross that almost resulted in a goal following a goalmouth scramble, but Botswana managed to clear the danger.

Despite both teams’ efforts, the match ended without any goals. This result extended South Africa’s unbeaten streak against Botswana to 13 matches, consisting of eight wins and five draws.

Bafana Bafana now occupies second position in the standings as coach Helman Mkhalele prepares his charges for a final group game against Eswatini.