Sour Santana moans at 2-0 defeat to Chile
Bafana Bafana coach Joel Santana appears to be living on a different planet.
The Brazilian blamed everyone but himself and his team after his side were beaten 2-0 by a lively and far more professional Chile in a friendly match played at a packed Peter Mokaba Stadium on Wednesday night.
This defeat ended Bafana’s record five match unbeaten run. But apart from the 3-2 win over Cameroon in Rustenburg last November, the other four opponents were weak and this appeared to give Santana and his players a false sense of security.
Chile brought Bafana down to earth with a bump despite what Santana said, and were given a lesson by the Chileans.
First Santana accused Chile of dirty play, stating: “Had this been a proper Fifa competition some of their players would have been booked or red carded. I don’t make the rules, Fifa does, but Chile were dirty and did not play fair.”
That was a cheap shot against a Chile side that were better organised and had a far better game plan than Bafana.
Santana then stated “the conditions in Polokwane suited Chile better”.
Bafana, who have moved to 70th in the Fifa world rankings, also lived up to their ranking with a below par performance that sent the fans home disappointed.
Then the coach denied that Chile had more pace.
However the truth is that the Bafana defence were outplayed and the team was run ragged by the two speedy Chilean wingers, Mark Gonzalez and Alexis Sanchez. Both were outstanding and were appeared unstoppable with their pace and ability to swing in accurate crosses.
Said Santana: “No, I do not think the Chile side had more pace than us. We did not play well in midfield. Our poor distribution let us down. Teko Modise and Siphiwe Tshabalala did not get enough of the ball. Also striker Benni McCarthy likes the ball at his feet but we kept playing high balls to him.”
“I was not surprised. I knew they would mark us tight and be aggressive. I told you all that before the game on Tuesday. They are a very strong side and we need to play against these type of sides if we are to progress.”
He then agreed Chile deserved to win but said: “A fair result would have been 2-1.”
South Africa now face Norway at the Royal Bafokeng Stadium on March 28 and Portugal in Switzerland on April 1. - Sapa