Jali’s plea to supporters

South Africa's players pose prior to the 2015 African Cup of Nations group C football match between Algeria and South Africa in Mongomo on January 19, 2015. Back row (L-R) South Africa's defender Rivaldo Coetzee, South Africa's defender Anele Ngonca, South Africa's defender Thulani Hlatshwayo, South Africa's midfielder Thuso Phala and South Africa's goalkeeper Darren Keet. Front row (L-R) South Africa's forward Tokelo Rantie, South Africa's forward Sibusiso Vilakazi, South Africa's defender Thabo Matlaba, South Africa's midfielder Oupa Manyisa, South Africa's midfielder Andile Jali and South Africa's midfielder Dean Furman. (Photo by AFP PHOTO/CARL DE SOUZA/Gallo Images)

Andile Jali has called on supporters not to “kill” Bafana Bafana after they were knocked out of the Africa Cup of Nations on Tuesday night.

South Africa showed signs of promise at this tournament, taking the lead against Algeria, Senegal and Ghana, but ultimately finished with just one point from their three matches in Group C.

Their defensive capitulations against Algeria and Ghana were particularly dismal, the side displaying a worrying mental fragility. Then again, Bafana were always underdogs in the group, playing against sides all ranked in the top five in Africa.

“I think a lack of experience killed us,” said Bafana midfielder Jali after the final nail was stamped into their coffin by the 2-1 defeat to Ghana.

“We have been scoring beautiful goals and after that we sit back and they come and equalise, then we are under pressure. I think we can take the experience from this tournament back home and grow from it.

“When we score a goal we must not defend so deep – it happened several times.”

The KV Oostende midfielder, meanwhile, hopes fans will not be too critical.

“I think they can’t react after a tournament like this,” he said.

“This is the first time at the Afcon for a lot of us, they must bear with us. We worked hard to get here and now they must support us to go forward. If they kill us, we can’t bounce back, if they support us we can bounce back.”

Jali also admitted the players were a bit tired.

“In the last game we were a bit tired and it didn’t fall our way, but I think next time it is going to be on our side,” added Jali.

 

Twitter showed their frustration about Bafana being knocked out of Afcon.





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