Bafana Bafana

Pienaar: World Cup starts now

2012-02-28 08:04
Steven Pienaar (Gallo)
Johannesburg - Bafana Bafana captain Steven Pienaar says the team needs to start developing a winning mentality as they begin preparations for the 2014 World Cup qualifiers.

Bafana will square up against 2012 Africa Cup of Nations flops Senegal at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in a friendly on Wednesday, and Pienaar believes the squad must use the encounter to build up their tattered confidence levels.

"We have to start getting that winning mentality and that's very important for us to go into the World Cup qualifying games. If you are mentally prepared and you know you've just come off a good win against a good team, it motivates the players," he told

"But we just have to enjoy the game, that's the most important thing. If you are happy I think the results will come on its own."

Pienaar has endured an injury-ravaged season, but a recent return to fitness and a loan move back to Everton from Tottenham has sparked a run of form for the 29-year-old.

"My fitness level is quite good. No one expected me to play two games in the space of seven days for Everton. I have been training hard after the Chelsea game. This past week I was training with Ajax Cape Town so I feel quite fit," he added.

The former Ajax Amsterdam man says a win against the Teranga Lions will boost the confidence in the squad after a disappointing 2011, which saw the team fail to qualify for this year's Africa Cup of Nations.

"In every sport if you win games you automatically gain confidence. You are prepared for the challenges ahead and a win will always boost our confidence," he concluded.

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