Footy tonight and footy past

I’m off to watch South Africa take on African Champions and second-tier Ebola carriers Nigeria at the Cape Town Stadium this evening. It’ll be my fourth time watching the national team and I have yet to see them win.
Or… er… draw, actually.

The first Bafana Bafana game I saw was seven years ago yesterday, as it happens: Zambia in an Afcon qualifier at Newlands. South Africa weren’t very good that day and Chris Katongo scored a hattrick in 11 minutes for Chipolopolo ruining the return of Benni McCarthy from international exile. It finished 1-3. It wasn’t great.

And then, because of the World Cup and the politics of SAFA, we didn’t see another Bafana game in Cape Town until after the World Cup. Then, we got to see them play the USA at the Cape Town Stadium in the Nelson Mandela Challenge in November 2010. South Africa weren’t very good that day, and lost to a second half goal from Juan Agudelo goal.

We shouldn’t forget the last time I saw them, either. 8th January last year, against a decidedly under-strength (read: “B-team”) Norway. South Africa weren’t very good that day and eventually lost a really, really boring game to Tarik Elyounoussi’s goal just before half time.

South Africa have won one first-class game at the Cape Town Stadium: a 2-0 win against the Central African Republic in March last year. I wasn’t there, but I was reliably informed that the Central African Republic weren’t very good that day. And yes, there were the CHAN games too, but those don’t really count.

So Bafana’s record is fairly unspectacular in Cape Town, and even more so when I’m watching them. New coach Shakes Mashaba has requested everyone to come out and support the team this evening, but if he knew my history with watching his side, he’d probably be less keen to see me there.

The stadium in Sudan was fully packed to capacity. I hope it will also be the case in Cape Town.

Well, no it won’t. I’m not sure what sort of crowd they’re expecting, but I am told that the lower tier has sold out and they’ve opened up the second tier for bookings. That would probably mean somewhere between about 25,000 and 30,000 tops.

I’ll try and snap a few photos this evening and put them on twitter (tonight) and Flickr (maybe tomorrow).