Bafana coach announces squad to face CAR in WC qualifier

BAFANA Bafana head coach Gordon Igesund has announced a 23-man squad

 

to face the Central African Republic (CAR) in a 2014 FIFA World Cup

qualifying match.

 South Africa resumes the “Road to Brazil” campaign with a crunch

 

match against the Central African opponents that will be played on

Saturday, March 23 at the Cape Town Stadium. Kick-off 8.15pm.

 “This is a huge match for us. We are in a position where we should

 

not be because I believe at this stage of the competition we should

have been top of the Group. We need to win this one to keep ourselves

in the race; that is why I have gone for a very offensive team.

Hopefully, we can resume this campaign on a good note. There is no

room for errors,” said Igesund.

 The Bafana Bafana mentor has made five changes to the squad that

 

played in the AFCON 2013 tournament, with defenders Siboniso Gaxa and

captain Bongani Khumalo making way for Russia-based Siyanda Xulu and

Morgan Gould of Kaizer Chiefs.

 Belgium-based Daylon Claasen makes a return after a long lay-off and

 

is joined in the squad by Dino Ndlovu who plays in Israel and Daine

Klate of Orlando Pirates. Thulani Serero, Katlego Mphela and the

injured Lehlohonolo Majoro have also failed to make the cut.

 “As you can see, I did not make too many changes because I believe

 

in continuity. We need to continue from where we left off in the Afcon

tournament. I still believe we have a good chance of qualifying for

Brazil in 2014, provided we win our upcoming match and go and do well

in the two away matches,” added Igesund.

 The coach has also included a 24th player in the squad, Supersport

 

United goalkeeper Ronwen Williams to join the team during camp to

learn. The 21-year-old will not be selected to play against CAR.

 “I think it is very important for us to start identifying the

 

younger players that will be the stars of 2018 World Cup, so it’s

crucial that I take this opportunity to call up one or two of these

youngsters to join the national team on a regular basis to be part of

the set-up, to feel the environment, get used to the situation and

slowly introduce them to the action,” said the coach.

 “Ronwen has been playing very well, he is still a youngster though,

 

but if you bring him into the national team fold and he will gain

invaluable experience. There are other several youngsters who I am

looking at and will also be invited to Bafana Bafana just for them to

get used to the set-up and for me and my technical team to have a

closer look at them. Come 2018 at least 20 players in the squad must

come from our junior national teams – U-17, U-20 and U-23 – so the

philosophy is the same. We need not lose out on our talent.”

 After two rounds of matches, Bafana Bafana are in third place in Group

 

A of the qualifiers following draws against Ethiopia and Botswana in

2012.

South Africa is in Group A in the qualifying matches against Botswana, Central African Republic and Ethiopia.

 The announced team is as follows:

 

 Goalkeepers: Itumeleng Khune, Tshepo Masilela (both from Kaizer Chiefs FC), Wayned Sandilands ( Mamelodi Sundowns), Senzo Meyiwa (Orlando Pirates)

 

 Defenders: Morgan Gould (Chiefs), Siyabonga Sangweni, Thabo Matlaba (both from Pirates), Thabo Nthete (Bloemfontein Celtic), Anele Ngcongca (Racing Genk FC, (Belgium), Siyanda Xulu (Rostov FC, Russia)

Midfielders: Kagisho Dikgacoi (Crystal Palace FC, England), Dean Furman (Oldham Athletic FC, England), Reneilwe Letsholonyane, Siphiwe Tshabalala (both from Chiefs), Oupa Manyisa, Daine Klate (both from Pirates), May Mahlangu (Helsingborg IF, Sweden),  Daylon Claasen (Lierse FC, Belgium), Lerato Chabangu (Moroka Swallows FC), Thuso Phala (Platinum Stars FC), r Chiefs FC (SA)

Strikers: Bernard Parker (Chiefs), Dino Ndlovu (Maccabi Haifa,Israel) and Tokelo Rantie (Malmo FF, Sweden)

 

 

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