Reports have surfaced of tensions brewing in South Africa as some citizens express dissatisfaction towards Super Eagles goalkeeper, Stanley Nwabali, after Nigeria’s victory over the Bafana Bafana in the AFCON 2023 semi-final match.
Nwabali, who plies his trade with Chippa United in the South African Premier League, emerged as a key figure in Nigeria’s triumph, showcasing remarkable performances throughout the tournament, particularly in the crucial semi-final encounter against South Africa.
During the semi-final clash on Wednesday, February 7, Nwabali exhibited exceptional goalkeeping skills, thwarting multiple attempts by South African players. His stellar performance extended into the penalty shootout, where he saved two spot-kicks, ultimately securing Nigeria’s victory over South Africa with a 4-2 win on penalties.
However, amidst the celebrations, reports have emerged indicating that some South Africans have directed threats towards Nwabali, expressing their discontent over his pivotal role in ending their team’s AFCON journey. It is alleged that certain individuals have warned the goalkeeper not to return to Chippa United following the tournament, citing their disappointment with his contributions against the Bafana Bafana.
Former Nigerian goalkeeper, Idah Peterside, shed light on the situation, confirming that while threats have been issued, no instances of violence have been recorded thus far.
The incident underscores the intense emotions and rivalries often associated with football tournaments, highlighting the need for sportsmanship and respect amongst fans and players alike.
As the AFCON 2023 final approaches, scheduled for February 11, the focus remains on the upcoming showdown between Nigeria and Ivory Coast, while tensions simmer on the sidelines following Nwabali’s standout performances and the ensuing backlash from certain quarters in South Africa.
See video below: