DR Congo and Swaziland book semifinal places
Guest nation DR Congo and Swaziland booked their places in the 2016 COSAFA Castle Cup semifinals with victories at the Sam Nujoma Stadium in Windhoek, Namibia on Sunday.
DR Congo defeated Mozambique 1-0 to set up a semifinal meeting with Botswana, while Swaziland triumphed on penalties over Zambia to book a date with South Africa in the next round.
Both of those semifinal matches will be played at the Sam Nujoma Stadium on Wednesday.
African Nations Championship winners DR Congo were the better side as Nelson Omba’s first half header proved the difference against a lively but outgunned Mambas side.
The Congolese, who had most of that CHAN-winning side in Namibia bar their TP Mazembe players involved in the African Champions League, have likely installed themselves as tournament favourites with a dominant display that could have seen them win by a greater margin.
Swaziland earned their semifinal spot with a hard-fought 4-2 penalty shoot-out victory over Zambia after the teams were deadlocked at 0-0 after 90 minutes.
Swaziland had the better chances and felt they should have had a goal when tournament top-scorer Felix Badenhorst headed the ball into the net, but his effort was ruled out for offside.
Zambia started the shoot-out on a positive note when Swaziland midfielder Zweli Nxumalo struck the post with his penalty, but the tide turned as Swazi goalkeeper Sandile Ginindza saved consecutive efforts from Paul Katema and Spencer Sautu.
The action on the pitch resumes on Tuesday, with the Plate semifinals that will see hosts Namibia take on Mozambique at 19h30 (18h30 GMT) at the Sam Nujoma Stadium.
Earlier at the same venue Lesotho will clash with Zambia at 1700 (16h00 GMT) as they seek to overcome their quarterfinal disappointment by chasing the Plate trophy that was won last year by Malawi.
The eight national teams competing in the knockout stages of the 2016 COSAFA Castle Cup will each visit a Windhoek school on Monday morning as part of the competition’s commitment to assist football development in Namibia.
COSAFA president Mr Suketu Patel will host a small presentation at each school, while the players from the teams will participate in a series of mini coaching clinics for the learners.
The captains of the sides will say a few words about leadership and each school will be presented with a set of 15 full kits from Umbro, as well as shin pads and a match ball.
Members of the COSAFA executive will accompany the teams, along with match officials, who will engage with the learners on the importance of Fair Play.
The 2016 COSAFA Castle Cup Brand Ambassadors will also be on hand to offer their insights and experience to the learners.
Each CSI initiative is expected to start at approximately 10h30 and members of the media are invited to take part in the school visits.
The following schools have been selected, with the teams that will visit them in brackets:
Shipena High School (Botswana)
Centaurus High School (South Africa)
Concordia College (Lesotho)
Goreangab High School (Mozambique)
Hage Geingob High School (Namibia)
Immanuel Shifidi Secondary School (DR Congo)
Otjomuise Project School (Swaziland)
Rocky Crest High School (Zambia)
SUNDAY’S QUARTERFINAL RESULTS
Zambia 0 Swaziland 0 – Swaziland win 4-2 on pens
DR Congo 1 (Omba 37’) Mozambique 0
TUESDAY’S PLATE SEMIFINAL FIXTURES
Lesotho vs Zambia (KO 17h00 local, 16h00 GMT) – Sam Nujoma Stadium
Namibia vs Mozambique (KO 19h30 local, 18h30 GMT) – Sam Nujoma Stadium