Namibia get Angola rerun at Cosafa

Augusto Carneiro of Angola in action against Namibia during their 2023 Afcon match in Bouake, Ivory Coast. File photo

Namibia will get a chance to exact revenge on Angola for the chastening Africa Cup of Nations defeat at the Cosafa Cup later this month, when the prestigious regional tournament is staged in South Africa.

The city of Durban remains the backdrop for this year’s edition which runs from 26 June to 7 July.

The Brave Warriors also face the Seychelles in Group C, along with last year’s runners-up Lesotho.

With the 3-0 Afcon last 16 loss still fresh in the mind, the Brave Warriors will have added incentive to turn the tables on three-time Cosafa Cup winners Angola, who have never lost to Namibia.

Lesotho and Namibia played out a 1-1 stalemate in a friendly match ahead of the recent Fifa World Cup qualifiers, with little to separate the two sides.

Their upcoming clash in Durban may follow a similar pattern.

Seychelles have had little joy against Namibia over the years, and on paper do not look like changing that narrative when they meet again.

“The group looks exciting with great prospects. We are looking forward to playing Angola again, they performed well at the 2024 Afcon, although it will probably be a different team. We played Lesotho and Seychelles a couple of times, and we are excited to give the young boys a chance to play and gain more exposure on the national front,” Brave Warriors head coach Collin Benjamin said when reacting to the draw.

Hosts South Africa and Botswana will lock horns yet again in the most played fixture in the competition’s history.

Friday’s draw for the 12 teams pitted the neighbours together for the ninth tournament in a row, with Botswana yet to win outright in any of their 12 previous meetings.

Mozambique and Eswatini complete Group A.

Record seven-time winners Zambia are favourites to become the first team to win three Cosafa Cup titles in a row.

They face old foes Zimbabwe and tricky Comoros in a fascinating set of fixtures in Group B.

The fourth team, likely a guest nation, in that pool will be confirmed in due course.

The pool games will be played from 26 June to 3 July, with the semifinals on 5 July, and the final and third-place play-off to be staged two days later.

The format ensures each country will play a minimum of three games up to a maximum of five over the course of the competition.

It also allows for an extra day’s rest between most pool games, a boost for player welfare.

The 22 previous editions of the Cosafa Cup have seen some great performances and incredible games that have been written into the folklore of Southern African football, but only five nations can claim to have lifted the coveted trophy.

Zambia went back-to-back in 2023 and now sit at the top of the list of most titles with seven.

That is one more than Zimbabwe, followed by South Africa (five), Angola (three) and Namibia (one), the only other teams to claim regional glory.

Mozambique, Malawi, Botswana and Lesotho have all been finalists twice, but ended up on the losing side on both occasions.

Two-time guest nation Senegal are the only other national team to reach the decider, but lost to South Africa in 2021.

Stay informed with The Namibian – your source for credible journalism. Get in-depth reporting and opinions for only N$85 a month. Invest in journalism, invest in democracy –
Subscribe Now!

Latest News