Bafana Bafana

Shakes to promote U23s to Bafana team

2016-08-12 09:54
soccer, getty images, shakes mashaba
Shakes Mashaba (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Bafana Bafana coach Shakes Mashaba has confirmed that he intends to give more chances to several Amaglug-glug players in the near future.

The national Under-23 side were recently eliminated from the Rio Olympics after finishing bottom of their group, behind Brazil, Denmark and Iraq in Group A.

However, Owen Da Gama's men did manage to produce some moments of magic, chief amongst them being a goalless draw against hosts Brazil in the opening round of group fixtures.

Added to that, several members of South Africa's Olympic team caught they eye with a series of impressive performances, including youngsters Abbubaker Mobara, Gift Motupa, Keagan Dolly, Rivaldo Coetzee and Deolin Mekoa.

Dolly has already featured for the country's senior team, and it seems more of his peers could soon join him in making the step up from the Under-23s.

"I heard a lot of people saying this (Under-23) team is Bafana Bafana. I agree with them. Gone are the days when we would fetch a player from 10 years back to play today. I am happy about what is happening," Mashaba was quoted as saying by Sowetan Live.

"I would love to see some of those boys playing (for Bafana). The longer we take to bring them in, they can become discouraged.

"I look at people and (ask) why they contradict themselves. If they say that those players are Bafana (but) when we select them and things don't go well, they say we should have fetched so and so."

He added: "What killed our football (in the past) was personal glory. Everyone who was in a position was all about 'me'.

"We lacked this synergy, where the Under-17s work with the Under-20s and the Under-20s work with the Under-23s and the rest work with the senior team. It makes life easier."


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Bafana Bafana have been drawn with Cameroon, Gambia and Mauritania in the qualification stages for the 2017 AFCON tournament. Where will Shakes Mashaba's men finish in their pool?

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