Sweden vs South Africa – Banyana Banyana fall short in World Cup opener

Sweden vs South Africa – Banyana Banyana fall short in World Cup opener
Credit: Icon Sport

Banyana Banyana clashed with Sweden at the Westpac Stadium on Sunday morning. Although the South Africans opened the scoring, they couldn't hold on for 90 minutes.

Let's take a look at Sweden vs Banyana Banyana, as it happened.

Banyana Banyana draw first blood

It's important to point out that Banyana Banyana had no wins in four prior encounters with Sweden; they suffered three losses in that stretch, with one draw. As a matter of fact, South Africa failed to score in their previous three skirmishes with the Blue and Yellows. In spite of this however, it was Banyana Banyana who opened the scoring shortly after the start of the second half.

Both teams had a slow start to Sunday's match, as the first half turned out to be fruitless. Although the Swedes had 70 percent of the ball in the first half, they managed just one shot on target. Likewise, Banyana Banyana registered a total of five shots in the first 45 minutes, and four of those were off target.

After an uneventful half, Banyana Banyana found the back of the net just three minutes into the second half, thanks to Hildah Magaia. However, the 28 year old was subbed off a few minutes later, as a result of a wrist injury.

Sweden's comeback victory

Things didn't turn out too well for Banyana Banyana after Magaia's injury; as the Blue and Yellows were back on level terms, thanks to Fridolina Rolfö. The Swedes started to find their stride after their equalizer, piling the pressure on their opponents. Their efforts were finally rewarded as Amanda Ilestedt found the net a few minutes before the final whistle, ensuring the Swedes would go home with all three points.

With that heartbreaking loss in mind, Banyana Banyana are now without a win in five matches against today's opponents; they'll need all the points they can get against Argentina and Italy, if they intend to play in the knockout stages of this tournament. It's also worth mentioning that this is South Africa's second outing at the FIFA Women's World Cup, and they've never gotten past the group stages.

What this result means for Banyana Banyana

At the time of writing, Banyana Banyana find themselves at the bottom of the Group G table. On the other hand, the Blue and Yellow currently lead the group standings with three points. It's important to point out that this was the first match in Group G; as Argentina and Italy are yet to play. That said, Banyana Banyana's next match comes up against Argentina; and these teams will clash on Friday July 28.

This article was most recently revised and updated 9 months ago

Kelechi is a huge sports fan with over 10 years of betting experience. He has written thousands of match previews on football, tennis, basketball and American football in the past few years.