Bafana confident of continuing with goal striking trend

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Johannesburg - Bafana Bafana's lethal striker Katlego "Killer" Mphela is confident the squad will continue with its recent goal-scoring trend in the upcoming 2010 FIFA World Cup.

The team has in recent weeks managed to notch up a few good goals to their name - and a few courtesy of Mphela.

Mphela told BuaNews he was aware that all eyes will be on him to do the same in the forthcoming tournament.

"I know too that teams might be looking at me as their main problem, however this will never put me under pressure during the tournament," he said.

Mphela says if the rest of the squad could provide him with the goal scoring opportunities, he would not disappoint.

His teammate, Bernard Parker is also looking forward to scoring more goals during the tournament.

"I am glad that we have in the recent friendly matches scored more goals, which is good in terms of boosting our morale.

"We are no longer going to be classified as a goal-scoring shy team because if the coach can give me the opportunity to play, I will fight to score more goals because I don't want to disappoint our supporters," he said.

Parker, who scored with a volley when Bafana beat Guatemala 5-nil in Polokwane on Monday, said he was not nervous to face Mexico, Uruguay or France.

"I was nervous when I arrived at the camp, but now, I am looking forward to make all South African fans proud. We have great, quality players at the camp who can deliver good results," he said.

Meanwhile, Bafana Bafana veteran striker, Siyabonga "Bhele" Nomvete, is confident that the national squad will go far in the tournament.

The livewire striker, who has played in various European leagues, vowed to put a smile on the faces of millions of South Africans by scoring more goals during the tourney.

During an exclusive interview with BuaNews at the team's hotel on Thursday, the Moroka Swallows striker said Bafana's opponents will have a tough time to close him down.

"I am very good in shaking and frustrating the opponent's defence, and I see no reason to stop doing so during the tournament. I will be causing more havoc for our opponents," he said.

Nomvete said whether he will start with the game or come in as a substitute, defenders will always find it difficult to relax at the back.

Bafana Bafana, who is in Group A along with Uruguay and France, will play at the opening match against Mexico at Soccer City next Friday.

Nomvete said: "Just like any other South African or our supporters from the continent and abroad, we are expecting nothing less than to beat Mexico."

Bafana centre-back, Bongani Khumalo said he is happy with his current performance and will not feel intimidated to play in the opening match against Mexico.

"The trust shown by our supporters always gives me strength to do more. I admit, their support is awesome and it would be good if they can continue to do so," he said.

Skipper Aaron Mokoena, who has been playing for the national team for the past 11 years, said the team was ready to take on their first opponents, Mexico.

"We will be playing to proceed to the next stages of the tournament," he said.

Before going to their training this afternoon, Bafana players will visit former President Nelson Mandela at his house in Joburg to get some much-needed magic he's sure to cast on them.