|Put looks on as Namibia dash Gambia's chances of qualifying (pix:cafonline)|
Warriors trash Scorpions hopes for AFCON 2012
A late goal for the Brave Warriors of Namibia was enough to thwart Gambia’s hopes of making a debut at the 2012 African Nations Cup to be played in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea in January.
During a Windhoek-day that show the Scorpions of The Gambia create a few goal scoring chances, Namibia’s South African-based striker Tangeni Shipahu make the most of a defensive error and fired past goalkeeper Pa Dembo Touray in the final 10 minutes.
The result left Gambia’s Belgian coach Paul Put rather dejected.
“I’m so disappointed with the results and how the team played today. We needed to win this match but we couldn't do it and now our destiny is not in our hands anymore. Secondly, I believe my players today did not reach their levels of potential and this cost us the game. We should have played better than this”, Put is quoted to have told cafonline.
Following the lost in the Namibian capital, Windhoek on match-day five of the campaign on Saturday, talks of Gambia’s chances of qualifying are either delusional or just plain draft. However, coach Put told the website of the Confederation of African Football (CAF), cafonline, that his side still has a chance of qualifying based on CAF’s ruling in an appeal filed by Namibia against Burkina Faso over the eligibility of defender Herve Zengue.
Asked if he still have a chance of making the finals, Put said: “Depending on how CAF rules in the Namibia-Burkina Faso case, and how we do at home against Burkina Faso, we might have a chance if it all goes in our favour. We still have a dream and it lives on until the final day, we have one more game and that counts a lot for us.”
Late last year, the Scorpions defeated Namibia 3-1 in a corresponding fixture in The Gambian capital, Banjul only to succumb to a defeat 3-1 to Burkina Faso in Ouagadougou in March 2010.
With one more game to play against Burkina Faso, Gambia and Namibia (played all games) are tied on three points while Burkina lead Group F with nine points.
Author: Modou S. Joof for The Voice Newspaper