Cape Town - The two South African teams pitted to compete in the Nelson Mandela Football Invitational against Premier League team Manchester City have been announced.
SuperSport United will play the English side on July 14 at Loftus Versfeld, while AmaZulu Football Club will take on the team on July 18 at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban on Madiba’s 95th birthday.
“We are once again excited to be hosting another international team on our warm shores for the second Nelson Mandela Football Invitational. And as a city, we are proud that our boys, AmaZulu FC will get the opportunity to compete against Manchester City, in what will no-doubt be an epic match.” said Councillor James Nxumalo, the Mayor of eThekwini.
He expressed his gratitude to the organisers of this tour and all other stakeholders for having chosen Durban as the destination of choice.
“We assure you that you have made the right decision. We will ensure that the team’s stay is a memorable one. We are excited and look forward to hosting the team,” he said.
Nxumalo also appealed to all citizens of eThekwini and beyond to go out in numbers to buy their tickets so that they can come and support the teams. He said that the local citizens would benefit a lot from the team’s visit, as they would get an opportunity to interact with and learn from them during the various activities that will take place during the tour.
"The Capital City is looking forward to giving our sports loving residents the opportunity to watch our home boys, Matsatsantsa apitori play against the Blues (Manchester City) at our historic Loftus stadium," said Councillor Nozipho Makeke, Member of the Mayoral Committee for Sport, Recreation, Arts and Culture from the City of Tshwane.
"Our city welcomes the English side, and our stadium, which has hosted many international sporting events, is the perfect place for the team’s first South African encounter," MMC Makeke concluded.
Manchester City are set to arrive in Durban on July 11, where they will begin their training ahead of the two matches. The visit to South Africa marks the peak of their preparation for the 2013/14 season, and these two encounters come ahead of the team’s tour to Hong Kong.
Tickets for the two matches will be available through national ticket outlet, Computicket, priced between R150, R250 and R350 from Tuesday, June 25. Fans can visit www.computicket.co.za for tickets, and seat allocations per stadium.
“The Nelson Mandela Football Invitational it is fitting way to celebrate a larger than life icon. Africa Rising is proud to support what is undoubtedly going to be a magical moment,” said Ndaba Mandela, chairperson of Africa Rising and grandson of Madiba. Celebrated annually around the world on Nelson Mandela’s birthday, Mandela Day is a tribute to his life’s charitable work and to ensure his legacy continues forever. Every year people around the world are called to dedicate 67 minutes for change on Mandela Day because everyone has the ability to responsibility for changing the world into a better place. Manchester City and AmaZulu FC players will also answer this call and will take charitable action to give back to the community during the tour.
Tour promoter, Lyndon Barends: “We are celebrating the legacy of Madiba Magic through the magic of soccer to bring people together.”
“We’re confident that these three teams will excite and entertain the soccer-loving fans of our country, and we are looking forward to sold-out stadia on both days,” he concluded.