Angola head coach Pedro Goncalves stayed positive after his side defeated Namibia 3-0 in their Round of 16 fixture of the Africa Cup of Nations to qualify for the quarter-finals at Stade de la Paix in Bouake, Ivory Coast on Saturday.
The Brave Warriors were handed a major advantage when Angola goalkeeper Neblu was sent off for handling outside his area in just the 14th minute but despite being down to 10 men, they continued to dictate play and opened the scoring through Gelson Dala following good work from Gilberto and Fredy.
Namibia’s task was made even more difficult shortly after when defender Lubeni Haukongo received a second booking for a foul on Mabululu. Angola pounced on the resulting free-kick as Jacinto Dala powered home a header to double the lead before the break. With Namibia chasing the game in the second half, gaps started to appear and Jacinto Dala turned provider to set up substitute Mabululu for Angola’s third.
“I would like to thank the team for securing this qualification. All the matches we have played are different and it comes with different dynamics and we saw that today. It was a difficult game and fantastic at the same time. It’s important to keep being resilient and focus on each match as we try to make efforts in each game. I would like to congratulate the team, the staff, and everyone in Angola,” said Goncalves.
“Even if people in the country are having difficulties to go by their duties and work, this victory will put smiles on their faces. Both teams had nothing to lose. Against Namibia, we went out together with the right strategy and also made a lot of mistakes but we corrected them.
“After the red card, it wasn’t easy but I asked the players to focus on the task they had to do on the field and this was the reason we created more chances kept our calmness, and played well at the end. When we started people didn’t believe in my plans and even personal things that didn’t have anything to do with work. But I have continued with my objectives and now we are here. I won’t say we are going to win the trophy but we are going to continue to dream.”