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FIFA Women's World Cup 2019™

South Africa

November: South Africa make history 

FIFA Women’s World Cup record

France 2019 will be Banyana Banyana’s first appearance at the FIFA Women’s World Cup™.

The road to France

South Africa have made history. After many years of trying, they made sure of a place at their first Women’s World Cup by defeating Mali 2-0 in the semi-finals of the 2018 CAF Africa Cup of Nations. Facing them in the final were Nigeria, whom they had beaten 1-0 in the group phase. There was to be no repeat, however, as the Super Falcons won 4-3 on penalties at the end of a match that ended goalless after extra time.

The coach

A pioneer of women’s football in South Africa, Desiree Ellis was appointed caretaker coach of Banyana Banyana in October 2016 before taking on the job permanently in February 2018. As well as guiding the national team to their maiden women’s world finals, she is also the first African player – male or female – to have won the COSAFA Cup both as a player (in 2002) and a coach (in 2017).

The stat

3 - The number of South Africa players who were named in the team of the tournament at this year’s Women’s Africa Cup of Nations: defender Janine van Wyk, midfielder Linda Motlhalo, and forward Thembi Kgatlana. All three play for Houston Dash in the USA’s National Women’s Soccer League.