Namibia's head coach Collin Benjamin watches his players from the touchline during the Africa Cup of Nations (CAN) 2024 group E football match between South Africa and Namibia at Amadou Gon Coulibaly Stadium in Korhogo on January 21, 2024. (Photo by Fadel Senna / AFP) (Photo by FADEL SENNA/AFP via Getty Images)

Collin Benjamin, the Namibian team’s coach, has reacted to their 4-0 defeat to South Africa at the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations. The loss came after Percy Tau opened the scoring with a penalty in the 14th minute, following a handball by Namibia’s Riaan Hanamub in the penalty area. Themba Zwane then doubled South Africa’s lead 11 minutes later. Just before halftime, Mamelodi Sundowns midfielder Tau scored a stunning solo goal. Substitute Thapelo Maseko added a fourth goal for South Africa in the 75th minute.

In an interview with *The Namibian*, Benjamin congratulated South Africa on their victory, stating that they deserved to win. However, he expressed his belief that the penalty decision was unnecessary and had a negative impact on Namibia’s performance. Benjamin felt that the penalty, awarded in the 12th minute, changed the course of the game and that Namibia never fully recovered from it. He highlighted that their transitions and management of second balls were not up to par.

Despite the disappointment, Benjamin considered the defeat to be a learning experience for his team. He mentioned that the timing of the loss was opportune as they still have a crucial game against Mali, and there is still a lot at stake in the tournament.

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