South Africa v Nigeria @FNB Stadium @2pm on November 17
It is with the mind of redressing the ignominy of losing to South Africa in Uyo last year that the Super Eagles will file out against their opponents on Saturday, but, it would have been easier for the Bafana Bafana if they had just beaten Seychelles as everyone expected.
Lose, and Stuart Baxter’s men will have to face an anxious wait for the last qualifying match against Libya in March 2019. The fans have not been totally enthusiastic about this match and the South Africa Football Association are finding it very hard to fill the FNB Stadium, where it is expected that a large of Nigerians would show up.
There are major injuries to both sides, which means some fringe players will get their chance to shine.
Will Gernot Rohr get his pound of flesh or will Baxter help confirm Bafana Bafana’s independence from the Eagles’ stranglehold?
Current Form: South Africa [D-W-D-W-W]; Nigeria [W-W-W-L-W]
Head to head
10/06/17 ACO Nigeria 0 – 2 South Africa
29/03/15 FRI South Africa 1 – 1 Nigeria
19/11/14 ACO Nigeria 2 – 2 South Africa
10/09/14 ACO South Africa 0 – 0 Nigeria
19/01/14 ANC Nigeria 3 – 1 South Africa
Prediction: South Africa 2-3 Nigeria
South Africa v Nigeria @Cape Coast Stadium @4:30pm on November 18
In what is shaping to be a super weekend, the Falcons will start their quest for a ninth continental crown against the Banyana Banyana of South Africa on Sunday at the AWCON 2018 tournament, for which they are also the defending champions. Stats gleaned from their eight previous encounters shows a rivalry that is very close. The Nigerian ladies have been triumphant five times, drawn once and lost twice.
With a strike force that includes the goal-scoring prowess of the likes of Asisat Oshoala, Desire Oparanozie, and Francisca Ordega, and led by Swedish manager, Thomas Dennerby, the Falcons should still be the team to beat in Ghana.
Current Form: South Africa [L-D-L-W-W]; Nigeria [W-W-L-W-W]
Head to head
29/11/16 AWC Nigeria 1 – 0 South Africa
22/10/14 AWC Nigeria 2 – 1 South Africa
07/11/12 AWC Nigeria 0 – 1 South Africa
23/06/12 FRW Nigeria 0 – 0 South Africa
03/06/12 FRW South Africa 1 – 1 Nigeria
Prediction: South Africa 1-3 Nigeria
Netherlands v France @ Stadion Feijenoord @8:45pm on November 16
The rebuilding work on the Oranje continues on Friday when Ronald Koeman’s new team comes up against the World Champions, France, who are on a 15-match unbeaten run.
The Netherlands have shown signs of improvement in their last two matches – beating Germany 3-0 and drawing away to a star-studded Belgium.
Memphis Depay has found his groove as a scoring deep forward whilst managing the forward thrust but in N’Golo Kante and Blaise Matuidi, he will be denied the spaces to operate effectively.
Paul Pogba is a doubt but Antoine Griezmann is a veritable source of goals. This should be an interesting encounter – one that could have a lot of goals.
Current Form: Netherlands [D-W-L-W-D]; France [W-D-W-D-W]
Head to head
09/09/18 UNL France 2 – 1 Netherlands
31/08/17 WQE France 4 – 0 Netherlands
10/10/16 WQE Netherlands 0 – 1 France
25/03/16 FRI Netherlands 2 – 3 France
05/03/14 FRI France 2 – 0 Netherlands
Prediction: Netherlands 1-2 France
England v Croatia @Wembley Stadium @8:45pm on November 17
It is a winner takes all encounter, with both countries able to win their Group 4 of League A with a win.
The last meeting was at the semi-final of the 2018 World Cup and the Croats won that encounter in extra time even though the Three Lions took an early lead.
The question that will be answered on Sunday is which of these countries has successfully moved on.
Both countries have also beaten Spain in their last competitive matches and the result would result in a winner scenario and demotion for the last country in the group.
Current Form: England [W-W-D-W-L]; Croatia [W-W-D-L-D]
Head to head
11/07/18 WOC Croatia 2 – 1 England
09/09/09 WQE England 5 – 1 Croatia
10/09/08 WQE Croatia 1 – 4 England
21/11/07 ECQ England 2 – 3 Croatia
11/10/06 ECQ Croatia 2 – 0 England
Prediction: England 2-2 Croatia
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