Namibia thrash Zimbabwe to reach quarter-finals

21 May 2015 20:30pm
By Hesron Kapanga
MORULENG, 21 MAY (NAMPA) – Namibia beat Zimbabwe 4-1 in the final Group A game of the Council of Southern African Football Association (Cosafa) Cup here on Thursday and thereby qualified for the quarter-finals.
Namibia dominated play from the start, scoring the opener in the eighth minute when defender Chris Katjiukua headed in a cross from the left wing.
The Brave Warriors controlled and dominated ball possession in the first half but could not capitalise on their goal-scoring chances.
The half-time score was 1-0.
In the second half, the Namibians were still the stronger side, scoring again in the 60th minute through Deon Hotto after great combination play between Hotto and Petrus Shitembi.
Hotto scored again seven minutes later from a through-pass by Wangu Gomes.
Zimbabwe scored their only goal of the game from a penalty shot after a Namibian defender handled the ball with his hands.
A minute later Namibian substitute Sadney Urikhob, who came in for Shitembi, added the final nail in Zimbabwe’s coffin with his first goal of the tournament.
Speaking to the media after the game, national team coach Ricardo Mannetti was happy with his team’s performance, but stressed that hard work still awaits them on Sunday against Zambia.
“I cannot remember the last time we beat Zimbabwe; even when I was a player we failed to beat them. But I am happy to have won as a coach and credit should be given to the players who executed the plan very well today,” he said.
The coach added that Zimbabwe should not be seen as an easy team because they lost to Namibia with a big margin, but people should know that Namibia is improving day by day.
“Today I told my players to stop underestimating themselves and show people what they’re made of and look at what they did. I hope they will take the same confidence into our next game with Zambia on Sunday,” said Mannetti.
That match will start at 14h00 Namibian time at the Moruleng Stadium.
Zambia won the 2013 edition of the Cosafa Cup which was hosted in that country. There was no Cosafa Cup in 2014 due to a lack of sponsorship.