Bafana face Paraguay test
Carlos Alberto Parreira (Gallo Images)
Johannesburg - With just over a week to go before the end of the month-long training camp in Brazil, Bafana Bafana face their toughest test on their tour of South America. Thus far, they have played seven practice matches against Brazilian clubs, and have not lost any, conceding just a single goal.
The match against Cruzeiro was very tough, but it does not compare to the clash against Paraguay.
"I expect the same commitment we have shown in all the matches we played here in Brazil. Of course this match will be more difficult in that we are playing another national team, but will be a good test for my boys. The difference also is that the Brazilians are technically sound, while Paraguay are very physical and enjoy high balls - which means our defence will have a busy night, " said Bafana head coach Carlos Parreira.
The last time these two sides met was two years ago, in Pretoria, South Africa where Bafana ran riot defeating them three nil.
Siphiwe Tshabala, Benni McCarthy and Surprise Moriri scored South Africa's goals.
"But that is all in the past.. We are ready to face them in their backyard. We have been in Brazil for the last three weeks and the performance of the team has been very positive. I think the confidence of our boys is slowly returning after playing so many matches, and it will be a good way to gauge where we are in terms of our progress," added Parreira.
Paraguay are ranked 9th in the world, and have qualified for the 2010 FIFA World Cup, so this will be a chance for their fringe players to convince the coach that they deserve to play in the World Cup.
The match will be played at the Defensores del Chaco Stadium in Asuncion, and kicks off at 19h30 (00h30 South African time)
20-man Paraguay squad for the clash against South Africa:
Goalkeepers: Victor Centurion (Tacuary) and Joel Silva (Guaran).
Defenders: Carlos Bonet (Olimpia), Paulo Da Whistles (Sunderland, England), Caesar Bentez (Buenosairean Hill), Julio Manzur (Olimpia), Pedro Bentez (Athletic Mineiro, Brazil), Aureliano Towers (San Lorenzo, Argentina) and Blas Cceres (Olimpia).
Midfielders: Marks Riveros (National), Osvaldo Hobecker (Blond u), Jorge Moreira (Freedom), Jonathan Santana (Wolfsburgo, Germany), Red Rodrigo (River Plate, Argentina), Hernn Perez (Villarreal, Spain), Nstor Ortigoza (Argentine Juniors, Argentina) and Marcelo Estigarribia (Newell’s, Argentina).
Strikers: Nstor Ayala (Tiger, Argentina), Guillermo Beltrn (National) and Rodolfo Gamarra (Freedom).
Head coach: Gerardo Martino