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South Africa, Zambia secure COSAFA U-17 Cup wins

South Africa, Zambia secure COSAFA U-17 Cup wins

South Africa and Zambia set up a winner-takes-all showdown in their final Group B clash after securing wins in their second COSAFA U-17 Cup group matches.

Bafana Bafana downed Mozambique 4-1 at the Anjalay Stadium, Belle Vue Maurel to move up to four points and take top spot in Group B.

The Young Bullets also overcame an underwhelming opening result – a 0-0 draw with Mozambique in Port Louis – to move up to four points after downing Lesotho in the day’s later kick off.

Again, however, the reigning champions were unconvincing, and required a later winner from Benson Simwanda to edge past their Lusophone opponents.

Vincent Kalinda and Enock Sakala had both gone close before Simwanda opened the scoring.

Zambia and South Africa will meet in their final group game at the St. Francois Xavier Stadium on Tuesday, with Bafana requiring just a draw to top the pool and reach the final four.

Should the two sides draw, either could also advance to the semis as the best placed runner-up.

Bafana may have enjoyed a comfortable winning margin, but their showing was notable for their profligacy in front of goal, with Mozambique’s defence struggling to cope with their offensive movement.

Bongolwethu Siyasi’s long-range opener broke the deadlock, before Motlhalosi Nare added a second.

Pablo Bechardas halved the deficit for the Young Mambas, but they opened up in search of an equaliser, and Thando Buthelezi punished them with a delightful individual effort.

Mthokozisi Balakasi added the fourth – and boosted Bafana’s goal difference – in injury time to leave them in pole position heading into their final group game.

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