Local News 7.8.2016 01:26 pm

Da Gama makes two changes for Denmark clash

Owen Da Gama coach of South Africa U23 (Sydney Mahlangu/ BackpagePix)

Owen Da Gama coach of South Africa U23 (Sydney Mahlangu/ BackpagePix)

Head coach of the South African men’s Olympic team, Owen Da Gama, has made two changes to the squad that held hosts Brazil to a goalless draw in the first Group A match of the 2016 Rio Olympic Games last week.

The South Africans face Denmark on Sunday (midnight SA time) at the Mane Garrincha Stadium in Brasilia.

One of the heroes of the first match, Itumeleng Khune retains his place in goals.

Lefback Tebogo Moerane is set to get a taste of the Olympics in place of Deolin Mekoa who has been shifted to central midfield.

The rest of the defence remains the same – Rivaldo Coetzee will partner Erick Mathoho while Abbubaker Mobara, who had a brilliant game against Brazil, will continue at right back.

Mekoa, who takes the place of Gift Motupa, will be joined in the middle of the park by Kwanda Mngonyama who comes in for the suspended Mothobi Mvala, and they will be assisted by Keagan Dolly and Aubrey Modiba.

Motupa has been moved high up in the attack in place of Menzi Masuku, who starts on the bench.

Lebo Mothiba will be the target man up front.

“Denmark is a good side and it will not be an easy match at all. They are very dangerous in set pieces and building up play. We will have to ensure that we stay alert at all times and do not give away fouls in crucial positions. We believe we have a good chance if we play to our strengths, and I can tell you now all the players are eager to continue from where they left off in our last performance,” said Da Gama.

Both South Africa and Denmark have a point each after they drew their opening respective clashes.

Kickoff for this match is at midnight South African time (19h00 local time in Brasilia).

SA starting XI vs Denmark: Itumeleng Khune (GK); Tebogo Moerane; Abbubaker Mobara; Eric Mathoho; Rivaldo Coetzee; Deolin Mekoa; Kwanda Mngonyama; Gift Motupa; Keagan Dolly (c); Aubrey Modiba; Lebo Mothiba
Subs: Jody February (GK); Tercious Malepe; Phumlani Ntshangase; Tyroane Sandows; Menzi Masuku; Tashreeq Morris

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