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South Africa v Angola

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Mphela: Set for a start?

Mphela: Set for a start?

South Africa and Angola will both be out for a first win at the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations when the second round of Group A matches take place on Wednesday.

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Bafana Bafana were held to a shock goalless draw against Cape Verde in the curtain raiser on Saturday, while the Black Antelopes were also unable to find a way past Morocco in the day's other group encounter.

Those results mean all four teams sit on one point each, leaving a win this week of paramount importance in the quest to secure a quarter-final berth.

South Africa have now failed to score in four of their last five matches, with only the pre-tournament friendly against Malawi producing goals as the Boys won 3-1.

That scoring drought might lead coach Gordon Igesund to start with Katlego Mphela in place of the misfiring Bernard Parker, while Bafana fans will be hoping Thulani Serero gets his chance from the start, having impressed off the bench against the Blue Sharks.

However, the Ajax Amsterdam ace admitted after the opening draw he was not yet at 100% fitness, but added he feels he will soon be back to his best.

Also in the midfield, Oldham Athletic's Dean Furman is expected to come into the starting XI after his Crystal Palace counterpart Kagisho Dikgacoi had been largely ineffective on Saturday, resulting in his half-time substitution.

Angola, meanwhile, had won four successive friendlies leading up to the AFCON but came back down to earth against the Lions of the Atlas.

However, Real Valladolid's prolific striker Manucho will always cause defenders headaches, and will be looking to open his AFCON account when the two sides meet at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban.

Posted: 22/01/13 09:40

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