/ 9 September 2008

Special Bafana Bafana team to take on England

A special Bafana Bafana team, selected to take on England in a friendly match on Thursday, was named on Sunday apparently with the support of national soccer team coach Shakes Mashaba.

The team was chosen specifically to include South African players who ply their trade overseas. Certain players in the foreign contigent were not part of Mashaba’s team that was announced last Thursday because of a fallout between them and the


These changes came after a lobby within the South African football fraternity pushed for the inclusion of Leeds United defender Lucas Radebe, Charlton Athletic striker Shaun Bartlett, Manchester United midfielder Quinton Fortune and Celta Vigo forward Benni McCarthy.

Radebe, Bartlett, McCarthy, Charlton Athletic defender Mark Fish and Hans Vonk, a South African goalkeeper based in Holland, were banned from all future Bafana Bafana matches after clashing with SA Football Association officials.

South African 2010 World Cup Bid Committee chairman Irvin Khoza said Mashaba and Safa agreed that a new team should be formed, and the name Bafana Bafana be used instead of SA XI.

Khoza said the bid committee would ask Fifa to recognise the game as an official match, and should Fifa concur, the players would then be capped.

”Under the Bafana Bafana name, Mashaba has an unfettered right to select the team,” Khoza said, adding that ”special circumstances” forced the team to be ”constructed in this way”.

South Africa would host the match to promote the country’s 2010 World Cup bid because of the stature of the match. However, when the match was announced last year, it was reported as a reciprocal match between the two countries. There was no

mention of it being used to launch South Africa’s international World Cup bid.

Khoza said Mashaba was still coach of Bafana Bafana, but would not take charge of this game. Jomo Cosmos coach Jomo Sono would lead the team. He would be assisted by Lamontville Golden Arrows coach Khabo Zondo,with Augusto Palacios as manager and Stanley Tshabalala will be the facilitator/manager.

Safa said it was not responsible for the match, but the 2010 World Cup Bid Committee was now in charge of the game. The fiasco started at last week’s press conference when Mashaba announced a 24-man team that excluded Radebe, Bartlett, McCarthy, Fortune, but included Germinal Beerschot defender Aaron Mokoena, FC Copenhagen striker Sibusiso Zuma and FC Bochum striker Delron


Safa’s senior administrator Barney Kujane took to the podium, and read a statement saying Mashaba’s team would change anytime before the friendly. This left Mashaba fuming.

”It is unfortunate that I should read something (players’ names) that is going to change,” Mashaba told the press conference. ”Where is my credibility in all this?”

Mashaba, however, read the list of players who would play that game. Most players, except three, in that list were playing in the Premier Soccer League in South Africa.

On Sunday, Mashaba refused to comment, saying the matter was in the hands of his legal team. ”I cannot comment,” he said.

Khoza said: ”Shakes is still the coach of Bafana Bafana.”

The full squad is:


Brian Baloyi (Kaizer Chiefs)

Moeneeb Joseph (Ajax Cape Town)


Mbulelo Mabizela (Orlando Pirates)

Thabang Molefe (Jomo Cosmos)

Lucky Lekgwathi (Orlando Pirates)

Lucas Radebe (Leeds United)

Aaron Mokoena (Germinal Beerschot)

Tony Coyle (Wits University)


Quinton Fortune (Manchester United)

Stanton Fredericks (Kaizer Chiefs)

Tebogo Mokoena (Jomo Cosmos)

Clement Mazibuko (Umtata Bush Bucks)

Macbeth Sibaya (Rubin FC)

Jabulani Mendu (Moroka Swallows)

Delron Buckley (FC Bochum)

Sibusiso Zuma (FC Copenhagen)


Lesley Manyathela (Orlando Pirates)

Shaun Bartlett (Charlton Athletic)

Benni McCarthy (Celta Vigo)

Mabhuti Khanyeza (Lamontville Golden Arrows)

Siyabonga Nomvete (Udinese)

On standby: Steven Pienaar (Ajax Amsterdam) and Jacob Lekgetho

(Lokomotiv Russia) – Sapa