Bafana coach defends Zim friendly

South African coach, Pitso Mosimane, has welcomed the friendly match against Zimbabwe, saying The Warriors were a competitive said that would enhance Bafana Bafana’s preparations for the 2013 African Nations Cup.

Pitso Mosimane
Pitso Mosimane

Mosimane was speaking in defence of South Africa’s choice of Zimbabwe as the team’s next opponents.

By current form, Zimbabwe are continental lightweights and, like Bafana, failed to qualify for next year’s African Nations Cup in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea.

Mosimane, whose team plays Ivory Coast in the Nelson Mandela Challenge three days before the November clash against Zimbabwe, defended the option to play The Warriors.

“For the integrity of the tournament we always try to get the best teams in honour of Nelson Mandela, hence the number one team on the continent, Cote D’Ivoire, who will give the tournament the high-profile stature that it deserves.

The clash against the Elephants is also aligned to our preparations for 2013 AFCON because the vision is now different – as we are hosting, so ideally we would like to play the top-ranked eight nations on the continent to give ourselves good preparation.

We have great belief that with the strong line-up coming this way, Cote D’Ivoire will pose a very strong challenge and that is what we need. We are also hoping that Zimbabwe, with so many players based in South Africa, will help us on our way to 2013,” he said.

He named a 28-man squad for the two matches. The squad is made up of 19 local players, with the other nine based overseas. Goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune has been left out due to injury.

Captain Steven Pienaar, goalkeeper Moeneeb Josephs and Kagisho Dikgacoi return after a long lay-off from injury, while Tsepo Masilela, Teko Modise also return after missing the last Bafana Bafana match against Sierra Leone due to injury.

Four new players have been called up – Musa Bilankulu of Lamontville Golden Arrows; Granwald Scott of Ajax Cape Town; George Lebese of Kaizer Chiefs and Siyabonga Nontshinga of Jomo Cosmos. – Brenna Matendere

Post published in: Football

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *