Bafana to host the Samba Boys

BAFANA Bafana will play five-time world champions Brazil on March 5 at the FNB Stadium in a match billed ‘It’s Samba Time.’

The Samba Boys are arriving in the country as 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup champions after walloping Spain 3-0 in the final. Brazil is also one of the favourites to win the World Cup 2014 on home soil and is currently by far the strongest national team in the world. They have some of the best technical staff on the universe in Carlos Alberto Parreira and coach Felipe Scolari, all former World Cup winners.

The President of the South African Football Association (SAFA), Dr Danny Jordaan said the game is a massive opportunity for Bafana Bafana to get the whole world talking.

“A good performance against Brazil will convince the doubters that South Africa is back,” he said.

“This is one of the last games Brazil will play before the World Cup and they will be fielding a team of stars who will be absolutely determined to play at their best to make sure they are in the World Cup team. Our team on the other end is also hungry for success. It’s going to be a really good game.”

Dr Jordaan said that SAFA had made a special effort to finalise arrangements so that tickets could be on sale before Christmas. “For a soccer fan there could be no better present for Christmas and New Year than a ticket to see Brazil.”

The SAFA President said bringing the current Confederations Cup holders to our shores is part of the strategy of the new SAFA executive to build a world class Bafana Bafana.

“If you want to be the best, you have to play the best and our announcement of Brazil today as Bafana Bafana’s opponents in March is testimony to our ambition of making our national side world beaters,” added Dr Jordaan.

“Matches between Bafana Bafana and Brazil have always been keenly contested, dating back to the Nelson Mandela Challenge matches and this will be the fourth meeting between the two sides. Each one of the previous matches have been hard fought and provided great entertainment. This one should be really special because the players all know this is an opportunity to shine.”

His sentiments were echoed by Bafana Bafana coach Gordon Igesund who praised the SAFA boss for arranging yet another global mouth-watering encounter for South African soccer fans.

The clash follows on the heels of the much-publicised match against European and World champions Spain last month (19 November 2013) at the same FNB Stadium.

“This is a huge game for us, good for the country and players. We have just beaten Spain and we want to give a good account of ourselves against the in-form Brazilians. To have them here as part of their preparations for the 2014 World Cup shows the amount of respect they have for us,” said Igesund. “I want to thank the President of SAFA for making this game happen. “

Gauteng Premier, Nomvula Mokonyane said by hosting the South Africa/Brazil match, Gauteng was underscoring its tag as the Home of Champions.

“Hosting the opening and the closing ceremonies of the 2010 FIFA World Cup showed that we are the leading province in South Africa when it comes to hosting major sporting events. We are doing it again by hosting Brazil, a few months after welcoming world champions Spain to our shores,” said Mokonyane.

“Gauteng is a world class city with excellent sporting facilities and it boasts many tourist attractions. We are therefore encouraging soccer lovers from across the country and the world to buy there tickets and join the festivities at Soccer City. This might be the last time to see Brazilian team in action before the June 2014 kick-off of the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil,” added the Premier.

Tickets for the much-anticipated clash will cost R50, R100 and R200. They will go on sale immediately at Computicket outlets and at Shoprite, Checkers and Shoprite-Checkers stores around the country.




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