Bafana Bafana

Pitso: Transfer talk a concern

2010-08-30 07:08
Pitso Mosimane (Gallo)
Johannesburg - Pitso Mosimane has admitted he is concerned that his Bafana Bafana stars will lack focus due to ongoing speculation over their futures.

This week Mosimane takes charge of his first competitive game since Carlos Alberto Parreira's departure when South Africa host Niger in a must-win African Cup of Nations qualifier.

But some members of his squad are embroiled in disputes with their clubs while others still have their minds on securing lucrative moves to bigger clubs.

The 2010 World Cup put many South African players in the shop window, with European clubs expressing an interest in the likes of Siphiwe Tshabalala, Bongani Khumalo, Siboniso Gaxa and Katlego Mphela.

'Shabba' seems likely to stay in the country after Kaizer Chiefs hung a "not for sale" sign around the winger's neck but Khumalo, who recently had a trial with Tottenham Hotspur, and Gaxa could still complete overseas transfers before the transfer window closes.

Gent and Lierse are both trailing Gaxa while Mphela has been linked with a possible move to Russia and Britain.

Meanwhile, Siyabonga Sangweni has refused to train since Chiefs baulked at Golden Arrows' asking price of R5m. And his coach Zoran Filipovic recently told the media that the defender's physical condition is poor, casting doubt over his relevance in the Bafana squad.

Like Sangweni, Gaxa has also boycotted training sessions at Mamelodi Sundowns because he believes the Brazilians are pricing him out of the market.

And Mosimane has been keeping a hawkish eye on these stories as all of the key characters are crucial cogs in the Bafana Bafana machine.

"There is no guarantee that the players we select are in the right frame of mind because they are busy sorting out their futures," Mosimane told The Times.

"We have a challenge. You have to take into consideration the situation of players such as Bongani Khumalo, Siyabonga Sangweni, Siboniso Gaxa and Katlego Mphela.

"We need them in the right frame of mind for the match. I am happy that Thanduyise Khuboni is settled after extending his contract with Golden Arrows," added Mosimane.

'Jingles' has advised some players to forget their Euro dreams for now and put their efforts into impressing in the Premier Soccer League.

"After the 1996 Africa Cup of Nations many Bafana players went overseas and expect the same after the World Cup," he said.

"Those players who did not get overseas contracts must just hang in there and focus on doing well for their local clubs."



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