Bafana abandon bid to lure Norwich's Surman


Bafana Bafana are abandoning a bid to get Norwich City's Andrew Surman to play for them at the African Nations Cup, coach Gordon Igesund has said.

Norwich City's Andrew Surman tangles with Manchester United's Danny Welbeck and Nani. (Olly Greenwood, AFP)

Igesund had travelled to try and persuade the Johannesburg-born Surman (26) who started his career at Southampton and later helped Norwich to English Premier League promotion, to commit his international future to South Africa but says he met with a lukewarm response.

"I believe he didn't show us the interest and passion we had expected from those wanting to play for Bafana Bafana. I got the feeling that he is not ready to commit to us so will not be pursuing that mission anymore," said Igesund.

Surman played four times for the England Under-21 side, but under Fifa rules is still eligible to play for South Africa at full international level if he seeks a change of allegiance.

Igesund has in recent months already called up two other South African-born players who were raised in Europe and previously not considered – Oldham Athletic midfielder Dean Furman and former Benfica junior Ricardo Nunes, who now plays in Slovakia.

South Africa host the upcoming Nations Cup finals from January 19 to February 10. – Reuters

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