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BafanaBafana drop to second place, Nigeria go top in AFCON qualifiers

BafanaBafana dropped two valuable points in their goalless draw away to Seychelles in their 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers on Tuesday, 16 October 2018 – a result which saw them fall into second place in Group E after Nigeria defeated Libya 3-2 later in the day.

With two matches remaining, South Africa is on eight points, just one behind the Super Eagles, who flew to the top spot for the first time since the start of the qualifiers.

BafanaBafana began the Road to Cameroon with a 2-0 win against Nigeria in Uyo (10 June 2017), followed by a goalless draw against Libya in Durban (8 September 2018).

Stuart Baxter’s men then came out firing on all cylinders with a 6-0 drubbing of the whipping boys of Group E, Seychelles, at the FNB Stadium (13 October 2018) – but in the reverse fixture South Africa couldn’t get out of the blocks, and managed only one point in Seychelles (16 October 2018).

After the loss to BafanaBafana, Nigeria revived their campaign with a 3-0 win over the Islanders (8 September 2018). The Super Eagles upped their tempo and scored four without any reply from Libya in Uyo (13 October 2018).

Following South Africa’s draw against Seychelles, Nigeria sensed blood and went for the kill in the return leg against the North Africans in Tunisia (neutral venue) – they survived a scare but won 3-2 (16 October 2018) to take the reigns in Group E with nine points.

Libya is third on the table on four points, while Seychelles are bottom of the group with just one point.

After four rounds of matches, BafanaBafana have won two and drew the other two.

Baxter’s side has scored eight goals and they remain the only team not to have conceded or lost a match.

BafanaBafana’s next assignment is a tricky clash against the Super Eagles, which will be played on Saturday, 17 November at the FNB Stadium at 15h00.

A day earlier (16 November 2018), Seychelles, who have amassed only one point, will host Libya.

The qualifiers will then take a four-month break and will resume in March 2019 – when BafanaBafana travel to Libya for the final fixture, with Nigeria hosting Seychelles.

Both matches will be played on Saturday, 22 March.

Source: South African Football Association

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