Bafana Bafana

Bafana train alone in Brazil

2012-09-07 09:10
Gordon Igesund (Gallo)

Sao Paolo - While Bafana Bafana trained at an empty Morumbi Stadium in Sao Paolo, hosts Brazil had thousands of fans turning up for their final practice session on Thursday.

The teams meet in a friendly international in the third largest city in the world with a population of 20 million, on Friday.

With only one third of a stand at the 82 000-seater stadium open for the session, many of the spectators, who had been queuing at the gate hours earlier, were left standing to cheer the Brazilian players as they went through their drills.

Preparing for his first match in charge of the national team, new Bafana head coach Gordon Igesund had been in good spirits earlier, joking with the players and the South African media during the visiting side's final tune-up for the match.

"You know this is not Brazil?" Igesund asked journalists, pointing to his players, training in the same yellow and green colours of the host nation.

"Just checking," he said, "I thought maybe you were here to see Brazil."

The players were rolling in laughter after some struggled to call out team-mates' names in a training exercise.

South Africa have never beaten Brazil's senior national team.

The five-time world champions are in the middle of ongoing preparations for the 2014 FIFA World Cup. The SA Football Association will hand a symbolic plaque to the Brazilian football federation on Friday, from the previous World Cup hosts to the next.

Read more on:    fifa  |  soccer

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