McCarthy ruled out of AFCON
Johannesburg - Orlando Pirates striker Benni McCarthy and Kaizer Chiefs defender Eric Mathoho have been withdrawn from African Nations Cup contention after failing to overcome their respective injury concerns.
According to the soccerladuma.co.za website
, neither player will participate in the Bafana Bafana training camp being held at Orlando Stadium in Soweto from the 27 December to 29 December.
Gordon Igesund’s squad currently consists of 31 players which will be whittled down to a final 23 come the squad announcement on 30 December.
The make-up of the squad is the 24 players selected for the recent friendly against Malawi and an additional seven players.
However, that number does not include McCarthy, struggling with a troublesome hamstring, and Mathotho who is battling with a knee injury.
“It is a blow when any player called up for the national team pulls out due to injury. It would have been a great situation to have both of them here,” said Igesund.
Ayanda Patosi and Andile Jali are both struggling with niggling ankle injuries but will join their compatriots on Friday to allow the coaches to assess their fitness.
England-based Kagisho Dikgacoi and Dean Furman and Darren Keet, who plies his trade in the Belgium Pro League, were not available for the camp due to club commitments.
“I already have 19 players in my mind but I still have some decisions to make for the rest, so there are still some places up for grabs,” admitted Igesund.
“These are exciting but also testing times for me and the players because at the end of the day only 23 players can make the squad.
"We saw in the match against Malawi that all players want to be part of this fiesta. But it does not mean if players are excluded from the AFCON squad it is the end of the road, we still have plenty of tournaments to come.
“What I am happy about is the great vibe in the squad and you can see all the players are eager to do their best which makes life harder for me and my technical team.”Players in Camp:Goalkeepers:
Itumeleng Khune, Wayne Sandilands, Senzo Meyiwa
Bevan Fransman, Thabo Nthete, Siyabonga Sangweni, Siyanda Xulu, Siboniso Gaxa, Tshepo Masilela, Thabo MatlabaMidfielders:
Oupa Manyisa, Reneilwe Letsholonyane, Siphiwe Tshabalala, Sifiso Myeni, Thanduyise Khuboni, May Mahlangu, Delron Buckley, Lerato Chabangu, Thuso Phala, Ayanda Patosi, Daine Klate
Bernard Parker, Lehlohonolo Majoro, Tokelo RantieAdditional players:
Anele Ngcongca, Andile Jali, Teko Modise, Bongani Khumalo, Ricardo Nunes, Thulani Serero, Katlego Mphela