The South African U17 Women’s National Team, Bantwana, suffered a 2-nil loss to their Moroccan counterparts in an international friendly match played at the Père Jégo stadium in Casablanca on Monday night (30 October 2023).
This was the second clash between the two countries as both prepare for the next year’s FIFA U17 Women’s World Cup to be played in the Dominican Republic from 16 October to 3 November 2024.
Head Coach Simphiwe Dludlu made three changes to the team that ran out in the first match, which ended in a 1-all draw on Friday, 27 October at the Mohammed VI football complex in Salé.
The hosts took the lead in referee’s optional time just before the break through Mokhtar Jamai, before securing victory in the 94th minute with a well-taken long range shot by Meyssane Layachi to make it 2-0.
This was South Africa’s first ever international outing with this group that started their training camp earlier this month (20 October).
“This team is 10 days old, not ten months – two matches and with a few training sessions in between, I don’t think we did too bad. I think in terms of competition a lot of the players got to realize what does international football mean. With more friendly games preparation times, more time that we will spend on contact sessions with the players, we surely have a bright future with this team,” said Dludlu.
The squad returns home on Thursday, 2 November and will be busy with exams, but will most likely return to preparations afterwards.
“The months of December and January are going to be crucial for us because those two months come before our qualifiers against Ethiopia in February, so it’s going to be quite important for us to be very intentional with our camps, and I hope that the Association will buy into the idea of us making sure that we get more players in, get to prepare together and be ready for the competition as soon as it starts,” added Dludlu
South Africa will be up against Ethiopia in the second round of the World Cup qualifiers in February in a two-legged tie.
The third round will see the winner facing either DR Congo or Kenya in May
Should they proceed to the third round, they will face the winners between DR Congo and Kenya in May 2024, with the fourth and final round being played in June.
There are only three slots available for the African continent and the South Africans will be hoping to make it three time lucky after their appearances at the 2010 and 2018 FIFA U17 Women’s Cup tournaments in Trinidad and Tobago and in Uruguay.
Solly Luvhengo led the team in the first assignment with Dludlu the head coach in South America.
In 2010 the team had the likes of Jermaine Seoposenwe, Kaylin Swart, Robyn Moodaly and Nomvula Kgoale, while the 2018 squad included players like Lonathemba Mhlongo, Sibulele Holweni, Karabo Dhlamini and Fikile Magama – all of who are in the current Sasol-sponsored Banyana Banyana squad.
SA U17 Starting 11 vs Morocco – 2nd Leg:
Casey Gordon (GK), Bonolo Phoshoko (c), Bonolo Mokoma, Sethabile Kamwande, Nomfundo Motaung, Lindelwa Mabuza, Julia Goncalves, Gugu Mabitsela, Mpho Nkadimeng, Adrielle Mibe, Tatiana Correia
Shifaa Hoossen (GK), Bilquees Salie (GK), Alvina Nwansoh Enoh, Lulamela Vena, Nompilo Dlamini, Khwezi Khoza, Phumela Tshamlambo, Inathi Nongoyi, Nomaswazi Vilakazi, Zoe October, Thulisa July, Katleho Malebana
Head Coach: Simphiwe Dludlu
By Matlhomola Morake