As Namibia’s beloved Brave Warriors takes to the field today to face the Eagles of Mali at the Stadia Du 26 Mars in Bamako for their 2021 Africa Cup of Nations first leg qualifier clash, I on behalf of the entire renowned New Era team would like to wish our boys all the best of luck in their quest to help Namibia qualify for her fourth Afcon tournament – with the other three being in 1998, 2008 and 2019.
It will not be an easy assignment for the boys and interim coach Bobby Samaria and his right-hand man Robert Nauseb, but judging from the Warriors recent friendly match against South Africa’s Bafana Bafana, which ended in a 1-all draw, one could see glimpses of a well-coordinated team boasting maturing players and roaring youngsters. On paper, especially when one looks at the experience and exposure in Mali’s team, it will be fair to concede that the Eagles will be enjoying the upper hand in that regard but one thing that I know for sure is that the Brave Warriors are from the Land of the Brave and that should serve as a clear reminder to the Malians that it has never been in the DNA of Namibians to shy away from any task at hand – irrespective of the magnitude.
So, in a few hours’ time, we will all be glued to our screens waiting to witness how the Warriors will fare with the Eagles. It is a crucial match for both teams considering the fact that Group A log leaders Guinea defeated lowly placed Chad to remain top with seven points.
Mali is placed second with four points and Namibia in third place with three points and Chad remains bottom with no point. Looking at the stats and at the log table, it becomes clearer as to why the Warriors must do everything in their power to collect maximum points today in Bamako.
Because a possible win will see Namibia moving in second place with six points and that will ease the burden on coach Samaria ahead of the second leg that is slated for Windhoek on 17 November. The 25-man Brave Warriors squad that travelled to Bamako is a well experienced and well-blended group of players capable of putting Mali to the sword. Players such as Petrus Shitembi, Peter Shalulile, Deon Hotto,
Ryan Nyambe, Virgil Vries and many others; they are all capable to come home with a positive result. In coach Samaria we trust, the Brave Warriors we trust. Good luck to the boys!!!