Pitso excludes Pirates players
Johannesburg - Bafana Bafana boss Pitso Mosimane has named his 23-man squad for Wednesday's friendly with Senegal at Moses Mabhida Stadium.
Mosimane has not selected any Orlando Pirates players in respect
of the Soweto club's upcoming CAF Champions League clash with Angolan
side Recreativo do Libolo next weekend.
"In the interest of the nation, I decided to leave out Pirates
players as they will be preparing for a crucial CAF encounter away in
Angola," said Mosimane
"If we select them, Pirates would have played six games in 18
days when they go for their second leg in Angola. If our clubs do well
on the continent, this will also lift the morale of our national team
players," added the former SuperSport United mentor.
There is only one newcomer to the squad - striker Edward Manqele
of Free State Stars. Thamsanqa Sangweni, though uncapped, was part of
the team that played against Zambia and Ghana in practice matches.
Goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune returns to the fray since he last
played in the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifier against
Sierra Leone in Nelspruit. He has been out due to a back injury.
Siphiwe Tshabalala and Reneilwe Letsholonyane were not considered as they are carrying injuries.
While Tsepo Masilela and Bongani Khumalo have niggling injuries, they are expected to pass late fitness tests.
May Mahlangu has also been included, after he made his debut in the friendly match against Equatorial Guinea in January.
Mosimane says the Teranga Lions encounter will form part of Bafana's preparations for the 2013 AFCON on home soil.
"This match presents us with an opportunity to prepare well for the 2013 AFCON tournament which we are going to host," he said.
"It's important to play the likes of Egypt, Ghana, Ivory Coast,
Burkina Faso, Zambia and Senegal. The challenge with playing these
strong sides is that a win is not easily achieved but we gain lots of
experience in preparation for AFCON 2013, unlike winning easily against a
small team and learn little."
Goalkeepers: Itumeleng Khune, Wayne Sandilands.
Defenders: Morgan Gould, Eric Mathoho, Wayne Arendse, Punch Masenamela, Tsepo Masilela, Bongani Khumalo, Siboniso Gaxa, Anele Ngcongca.
Midfielders: Thanduyise Khuboni, Thamasanqa Sangweni,
George Maluleka, Teko Modise, Kagisho Dikgacoi, May Mahlangu, Daylon
Classen, Steven Pienaar, Thulani Serero, Lebohang Mokoena.
Strikers: Katlego Mphela, Siyabonga Nontshinga, Edward Manqele.