Warriors wary of pesky Pirates 

The Namibian team that played Angola on the 28 June 2024. BackpagePix

The Brave Warriors are likely to make several changes for today’s final Cosafa Cup pool C clash against the Seychelles to mitigate fatigue, injury and burnout, but the philosophy will not change, head coach Collin Benjamin says.

Following Monday’s hard-fought 2-1 victory over the Likuena of Lesotho, Namibia are on the verge of a semi-final berth, needing only a draw to either top the group or go through on account of being the best second-placed team of the group stage.

Alternatively, the Brave Warriors can beat The Pirates today and secure top spot if Angola’s Pelancas Negras fail to get three points against Lesotho’s Likuena.

And after the Indian Ocean islanders held Lesotho 1-1 on Friday before giving Angola a torrid time, despite eventually going down 3-2 on Monday, Benjamin is not taking the Seychelles lightly.

He wants his charges to continue making life uncomfortable for their opponents and capitalise on the numerous scoring chances they create.

Namibia did that to good effect against Lesotho, disrupting their rivals passing game and rhythm, forcing them into a scrap which played into the Brave Warriors hands.

“These international matches are really never easy. It doesn’t even matter who it is. The gap has closed through good organisation and good structure. The teams, the technical teams and administration has improved over the years. So, there’s no easy games,” Benjamin says of nations perceived as minnows in football.

Both Angola and Namibia have four points, but the former tops the group with a +1 goal-difference, having scored three goals to Namibia’s two.

Lesotho and Seychelles have a point each and are not out of contention for the semi-finals.

“All I’m saying is that we have one day to rest. All energy and everything that we have, we have to put into this last game.

Hopefully, it’s going to be positive and then we see how that goes,” says Benjamin, who hopes his side can use the win over Lesotho as a springboard to go further into the tournament.

Ivan Kamberipa put Namibia in front on 36 minutes but Lesotho found the equaliser just after half-time through Neo Mokhachane before a composed finish from Bethuel Muzeu secured the points.

“We actually didn’t expect this. Lesotho asked everything from Namibia and I’m just happy that we could get the three points and we have another game, and hopefully we’ll have more than one game so that we can test these boys some more,” says Benjamin.

“We have five or six of the boys that never played international soccer before and they’re out there getting bombed, kicked – it’s a baptism of fire and that’s what I like.

“I want this because through this platform, through these games, we’re kind of preparing them for when the nations cup qualifiers and world cup qualifiers are coming,” he says.

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