“At halftime I went up to the ref and asked him what the problem was with our team because it felt like he was allowing the physicality of Ghana, that they were playing very physical and not challenging the ball.
“He just told me that, 'It's a contact sport'. So I said, 'Yes, but then the ruling must go for both teams', and he just told me to get away because he would book me.
“But in saying that, I'm proud of the boys. We went there, we never gave up and we fought. And to see youngsters fighting, even when their backs are against the wall, and they're being targeted, showed the character in this team and the belief that we have. And the future is exciting and I'm looking forward to it.”
Williams thanked SA supporters for their positive messages, “and especially the messages to Rushine [de Reuck, who conceded the penalty]. I know how he feels, obviously he's disappointed, but we are proud of him.
“We conceded two goals in three games [in the qualifiers] — he's one of the reasons for that. He shouldn't drop his head. This is a small setback for greater things to come for him.”