Reuters Soccer Blog

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Another Angola collapse and crowds could plummet


African Nations Cup organisers will be bundle of nerves over the next 24 hours, contemplating the fate of host nation in the tournament.

Angola blew a phenomenal four goal lead in Sunday’s opening match against Mali and now look vulnerable to the prospect of early elimination if they fail to beat Malawi on Thursday (1830 GMT).

The 50,000 spectators at the new November 11 Stadium were stunned by the capitulation of their team, seemingly coasting home to the most positive of starts with just over 10 minutes to go before collapsing like a deck of cards and handing Mali an improbable point in a 4-4 draw.

Classic watching for the neutrals but heartbreak for the locals, and real concern for the organisers.

Fans come to praise Booth, not to boo him


Matthew Booth stands out in the South African side. At 1,98m, he towers over his team mates and is also the only white player in the home team’s starting line-up at the Confederations Cup.

He is also very popular with the fans, the majority of whom are black, and who remember with particular affection the role he played as captain of the South African under-23 side when they beat Brazil at the Olympic Games nine years ago.