Argentineans back Bafana

2010-06-22 15:51
Polokwane – There may be little chance of it happening, but Argentina supporters in Polokwane for their country's game against Greece on Tuesday night, would love to see Bafana Bafana qualify for the second round of the World Cup.

"It would be great for us as Argentineans," said Julian Tachella, who was braaiing hamburgers with his eight Argentinean friends at a lodge outside the town of Haenertsburg, in Polokwane.

If Bafana came second in their group, the team was likely to face Argentina in knock-out game.

"For one, it would be great to play South Africa in South Africa," said Tachella.

"It would be a wonderful atmosphere. We could show South Africans our spirit and our songs, we would drown out the vuvuzelas with our singing – but it would also be easier for us to face Mexico or Uruguay."

Good chance of winning

His friend Mauro Gil thought Bafana stood a good chance of winning, but that the game against France on Tuesday afternoon would be very tight.

"France are in a mess. They have nothing to play for," Gil said.

"Bafana has everything to play for. It will be a good game. We are going to watch at the fan park in Polokwane this afternoon before we play Greece. We will be supporting Bafana all the way."

Gil said he and his Argentinean friends had discussed Bafana's string of poor performances before the World Cup and then their 3-0 loss against Uruguay.

"Us Argentineans travel around the world to watch our team play. Nowhere is too far. If I have a girlfriend, I won't drive 200km to see her, but I will walk 200km to see my team play.

Tattoos

"We tattoo our teams' names onto our arms," he said, raising his sleeve to show off a large tattoo of the soccer club he supports in Argentina.

"We are brought up singing songs about our teams. Soccer is part of our culture. It is who we are.

"Bafana won't win at the World Cup until soccer becomes part of South Africa's culture."

The group of Argentineans arrived in South Africa before their team's first game at Ellis Park against Nigeria nearly two weeks ago.

They said they wanted to make tailing their team at World Cups a tradition.

Second World Cup

"This is my second World Cup," said Lucho Escarez.

"Last time we went to Germany, now we are in South Africa. Next, we will go to Brazil.

"It's a good way to see a country. We always have a game to chase and we get to see things and meet people while we are doing it," said Escarez.

He had met many good people in South Africa.

"The people here are the best and we hope that they get to see us play Bafana in the second round. That would be perfect."

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