South Africa beat DR Congo in shootout to finish third at AFCON

South Africa beat DR Congo in shootout to finish third at AFCON

South Africa took third at the Africa Cup of Nations after beating DR Congo 6-5 on penalties to secure their best finish at the tournament in 24 years.

Bafana Bafana captain Ronwen Williams was the key man again, as the quarter-final hero saved two spot-kicks.

First, DR Congo captain Chancel Mbemba had the chance to win it, only for Williams to block, before Meshack Elia’s penalty was also saved.

The game, which ended goalless, went straight to penalties after 90 minutes.

After losing their semi-final on spot-kicks, South Africa became the first team to play three straight Afcon shootouts after Williams had saved four penalties in the quarter-final win against Cape Verde.

In Abidjan’s Felix Houphouet-Boigny stadium, the goalkeeper again proved the central figure after midfielder Teboho Mokoena, a primary factor in South Africa’s superb run in Ivory Coast, hit the post with the first penalty.

Shortly after the skipper secured South Africa’s success, Belgian coach Hugo Broos, 71, was given the bumps after adding a third-place ‘bronze’ to the ‘gold’ he secured with Cameroon’s 2017 triumph.

Bafana Bafana last stood on the podium in 2000, when beating Tunisia on penalties, while DR Congo were trying to equal their best tournament since 1998, which was when South Africa last contested a Nations Cup final, two years after their sole title.

The Leopards will wonder how they came away fourth after missing several chances, with Mbemba and Fiston Mayele wasting inviting opportunities late on.

Having now won all three of their Nations Cup encounters with DR Congo, South Africa, meanwhile, will feel their dramatic victory rewards a campaign when they have both surprised and impressed many observers.

Source: BBC

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