AFCON: South Africa secure bronze after penalty victory over DR Congo

South Africa clinched the bronze medal in the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) after a nerve-wracking penalty shootout against the Democratic Republic of Congo on Saturday.

ABIDJAN, Ivory Coast (AFP)South Africa clinched the bronze medal in the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) after a nerve-wracking penalty shootout against the Democratic Republic of Congo on Saturday.

Bafana Bafana captain and goalkeeper Ronwen Williams emerged as the hero again, leading South Africa to a 6-5 victory after a goalless draw in regular time at the Stade Felix Houphouet-Boigny in Abidjan.

Williams, who had previously saved four penalty kicks in a quarter-final shootout against Cape Verde, proved instrumental in South Africa’s triumph.

His saves from Chancel Mbemba and Meschack Elia secured the bronze for Bafana Bafana, maintaining their perfect record in third-place playoffs since their victory over Tunisia 24 years ago.

Reflecting on the victory, South Africa coach expressed his pride in the team’s performance, stating, “It was a hard-fought match, and I’m immensely proud of the players for their resilience and determination.

Winning the bronze is a testament to their hard work throughout the tournament.”

Ronwen Williams (1) of South Africa celebrates with teammates during the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations Finals match between South Africa and DR Congo in Ivory Coast on 10 February 2024 ©Samuel Shivambu/ BackpagePix
FILE: Ronwen Williams (1) of South Africa celebrates with teammates during the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations Finals match between South Africa and DR Congo in Ivory Coast on 10 February 2024 ©Samuel Shivambu/ BackpagePix

Despite the disappointment of missing out on the final, DR Congo showcased their attacking prowess throughout the match.

However, their failure to convert numerous chances into goals ultimately cost them the match.

South Africa made strategic changes to their lineup, with Nkosinathi Sibisi, Thapelo Morena, and Mihlali Mayambela stepping in to replace suspended and injured players.

This tactical adjustment proved effective as Bafana Bafana held firm against a resilient Congolese side.

Looking ahead, all eyes are now on the highly anticipated final between Ivory Coast and Nigeria, set to take place on Sunday.

The clash promises to be a thrilling encounter, with a seven-million-dollar prize at stake.

The teams previously met in the group stage, where Nigeria secured a narrow 1-0 victory over Ivory Coast.

As anticipation mounts, football fans eagerly await the culmination of this captivating tournament in Abidjan.

RosGwen24 News
RosGwen24 News
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