Int’l. Friendlies: Brazil wallop South Africa as Team USA lay ambush for Nigeria in Kansas City

By Harry Awurumibe, Africa’s No.1 Women Football Journalist 

Super Falcons players celebrating a goal in a previous match. Can the former African Champions celebrate in Kansas City today?

Recently crowned African Champions, South Africa have been taught a football lesson as Banyana Banyana began their preparations for next year’s FIFA Women’s World Cup with a 3-0 loss to Brazil on Friday evening.

The prestige encounter which took place at Orlando Stadium was the first of the two matches arranged by South Africa Football Association (SAFA) for Banyana to serve as part of the  preparations for next year’s FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand. 
Prompt News reports that Banyana named largely the same side that beat Morocco in the 2022 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations (WAFCON) final but were without talismanic captain, Thembi Kgatlana and Noko Matlou, although ‘Golden Girl’ Jermaine Seoposenwe and Linda Motlhalo led the attack on the night. 
But it was Brazil’s “Samba Girlz” that  settled the better of the sides and had a big chance early on after Kerolin Ferraz went through in the box but goalkeeper Andile Dlamini came off her line and made a crucial save from point-blank range.
The Copa America Femenina Champions gained dominance high up the pitch but around the half-hour mark Banyana carved out two clear chances on counter-attacks but could not cash in. 
The best of the Banyana Banyana’s  chances fell to Noxolo Cesane, who latched onto a through ball clear on goal, with shot-stopper Lorena da Silva way off her line but her first-time volley missed the open goals wide.
Desiree Ellis’ charges were eventually punished just before the half-time break from a classy goal by Geyse Ferreira, who controlled a rebound with her chest on the edge of the box and fired a dipping volley that went in off the crossbar.
Brazil quickly doubled their lead on the stroke of half-time after Andriana Leal da Silva latched onto a bad clearance by Bangeka Gamede in the box and powered a close-range strike past Dlamini.

Rising Star, Chinemerem Esther Onyenezide may get her Super Falcons debut today in USA

The visitors dropped deep behind the ball in the early exchanges of the second stanza but Banyana tampered with their defence around the hour-mark after the most capped player Janine Van Wyk replaced Lebohang Ramalepe.

Banyana could not settle at the back as Tamires de Britto made it 3-0 for Brazil moments later with a stunning left-footed volley into the top corner from a rebound after miscued clearance by Bambani Mbane.
The game opened up in the closing stages and Seoposenwe had a big chance to score a consolation goal after bursting clear on goal but she was put off by Lorena da Silva, who caught her trailing leg before she shot wide.
Brazil held on to their resounding win in the end but Banyana will have a chance for a revenge in the second friendly on Monday, September 5, 2022 at Moses Mabhida Stadium, South Africa.
Meanwhile, former  African champions, Super Falcons of Nigeria are in the United States of America (USA) on a two-match tour with the United States Women’s National Team, (USNT) with the first of the two matches taking place at the Children’s Mercy Park in Kansas City, Kansas (today) Saturday, September 3, 2022.
After what Nigerians believed to be a woeful outing in the last WAFCON in Morocco, there are expectations that American-born Head Coach Randy Waldrum will use today’s match to salvage the battered image of Super Falcons by leading his charges to upset the reigning world  champions at their backyard.
However, it will be easier for the camel to pass through the eyes of the needle than Nigeria beat their hosts as the star-studded Team USA with veteran strikers Alex Morgan of San Diego Wave FC; Megan Rapinoe of OL Reign and 
Mallory Pugh of  Chicago Red Stars as well as goalie Alyssa Naeher of Chicago Red Stars, will defeat Nigeria in Kansas City today.
But can Super Falcons prove the doubting Thomas wrong ?

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