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26 May 2010 18:20
Soccer fans have been urged to leave early for Bafana Bafana’s friendly against Colombia at Soccer City on Thursday night and to use the Rea Vaya Bus Rapid Transport system or the city’s park-and-ride facilities.
Kick-off is at 8:35pm.
The City of Johannesburg and the South Africa Football Association (Safa) on Wednesday said that more than 300 Johannesburg metro police officials and Gauteng safety traffic officers would be deployed to ensure traffic moved smoothly.
The roads around Soccer City would be open only to ticket-holders.
Other road-users should use alternative routes and avoid Soccer City on Thursday night.
Safa chief executive officer Leslie Sedibe said the match was heading for a sellout with 55 000 tickets sold by Wednesday morning.
He urged fans to arrive early to avoid the chaos at the Nedbank Cup final on Saturday when 72 000 fans battled to get into and out of Soccer City at the match between BidVest Wits and AmaZulu.
“When there [are] over 70 000 spectators at a match and everyone wants to leave at the same time then there will be problems,” said Sedibe.
“But we hope to avoid the worst of them on Thursday. Come early and leave a bit later and enjoy the entertainment we have laid on for after the game,” he said.
City of Johannesburg executive director Sibongile Mazibuko suggested that spectators plan their routes to the stadium.
“The fans must give themselves enough time to get the venue,” she said.
Mazibuko said Rea Vaya would operate from Soweto and the CBD to Soccer City.
“I also urge supporters to buy return tickets and avoid time-wasting queues after the match.”
A return ticket would cost R12.
Mazibuko said the new N17 link from the N1 would be open and that this would help with the traffic flow.
Fans going to the match by car should use the free park-and-ride facilities at Shareworld and Rand Show road, and the parking around the Nasrec expo centre.
She said Metrobuses would run and there would be a train service.
Sedibe praised Bafana’s fans for coming to the World Cup party by getting behind the national team.
“The fans have been simply amazing and rallied around Bafana and the flag.
This augurs well for the World Cup in two weeks time,” he said.
Bafana recently played in front of a massive crowd to beat Thailand 4-0 at Nelspruit’s Mbombela Stadium, and against to draw 1-1 against Bulgaria at Orlando Stadium on Monday night.
Under head coach Carlos Alberto Parreira, Bafana are unbeaten in their last nine games.
Bafana open their World Cup campaign against Mexico at Soccer City on June 11.—Sapa
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