Struggling prior to the Africa Cup of Nations, Nigeria have righted the ship and find themselves only one victory away from the final. But South Africa aren’t going to make this easy for them as Bafana Bafana have been one of the best stories of the entire tournament going on a shock run and keeping four consecutive clean sheets for the first time ever in AFCON play. Those four clean sheets also match South Africa’s total in their previous 21 appearances in the tournament.
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Nigeria’s attack was expected to be their strength coming into the tournament led by Victor Osimhen but with their star striker only netting one goal, they’ve actually leaned on the defense also keeping four consecutive clean sheets.
Here’s our storylines, how you can watch the match and more:
How to watch and odds
- Date: Wednesday, Feb. 7 | Time: 12 p.m. ET
- Location: Stade de Bouake — Bouake, Ivory Coast
- TV: beIN Sports | Live stream: fuboTV (Try for free)
- Odds: Nigeria -160; Draw +240; South Africa +550
Nigeria: With an underperforming attack only scoring five goals from an xG of 8.59, if there’s a time that it would be good for Nigeria to get things back to where they need to be attacking wise, it’s this match versus a South Africa side that’s playing with supreme confidence. Osimhen, who may not play due to injury, has been among the biggest underperformers but he’ll be fit and ready to lead the Super Eagles to their first AFCON final since 2013 when they also won the tournament in Equatorial Guinea.
South Africa: Bafana Bafana haven’t scored many goals but when they do, odds are that Themba Zwane is involved with two goals and one assist in the tournament. If he can net a third, he’d become the first South African player to score three goals in a tournament since Shaun Bartlett in 2000. South Africa haven’t been to an AFCON final since 1998 but last won the tournament in the 1996 edition.
It’s going to be a low-scoring affair but one that eventually Nigeria will emerge victoriously from defeating South Africa by a single goal. Pick: Nigeria 1, South Africa 0