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Bafana leave out Benni

2010-06-01 09:29
Johannesburg - As widely expected England-based striker Benni McCarthy was left out of the final 23-man Bafana Bafana squad for the 2010 Soccer World Cup starting on June 11.

German-based goalkeeper Rowen Fernandez was also excluded, with Maritzburg United goalkeeper Shu-Aib Walters taking his place.

Coach Carlos Alberto Parreira said: “My heart is jumping off happiness. Went to bad in the early hours of the morning. Could not celebrate any goals because it has been difficult for us as coaches. These players were really outstanding in giving the best for the team.

“Put your heads up. Life goes on. We are only allowed to take 23 but thank you very much for your efforts, your attitude and commitment. A team is when somebody shares the same vision, whether you are playing or on the bench.

“The people said, coach make us proud. Bafana make us proud, players make us proud and we appreciate the support from you.

Colombia was not the best game but the support was great. It was just like a World Cup game.

“We need a lot of noise. We need the vuvuzela. The vuvuzela is our best 12th player. When Brian Robson complained about the vuvuzela, I said he didn’t see anything, it going to be even more at Soccer City on June 11.

“When we started I said we needed an identity. Today this team has an identity and a face. There is commitment and everyone is prepared to fight for this team. Watching the team play in the last couple of games I can say the team is ready. We are ready to face any team and we do not fear anyone.

Bafana begin their 2010 campaign on Friday, June 11 against Mexico at Soccer City in Johannesburg. Kick-off is at 16:00.

Bafana's other two Group A matches are against Uruguay at Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria on Wednesday, June 16 at 20:30 and France at the Free State Stadium in Bloemfontein on Tuesday, June 22 at 16:00.

Bafana SWC squad:

Goalkeepers:
Itumeleng Khune (Kaizer Chiefs), Moeneeb Josephs (Orlando Pirates), Shu-Aib Walters (Maritzburg United)

Defenders:
Matthew Booth (Mamelodi Sundowns), Lance Davids (Ajax Cape Town), Siboniso Gaxa (Mamelodi Sundowns), Bongani Khumalo (SuperSport United), Tsepo Masilela (Maccabi Haifa, Israel), Aaron Mokoena (Portsmouth, England), Anele Ngcongca (Genk, Belgium) Siyabonga Sangweni (Golden Arrows), Lucas Thwala (Orlando Pirates)

Midfielders:
Kagisho Dikgacoi (Fulham, England), Thanduyise Khuboni (Golden Arrows), Reneilwe Letsholonyane (Kaizer Chiefs), Teko Modise (Orlando Pirates), Steven Pienaar (Everton, England) MacBeth Sibaya (Rubin Kazan, Russia) Siphiwe Tshabalala (Kaizer Chiefs)

Forwards:
Surprise Moriri (Mamelodi Sundowns), Katlego Mphela (Mamelodi Sundowns), Siyabonga Nomvethe (Moroka Swallows), Bernard Parker (FC Twente, Netherlands).

Dropped:
Rowen Fernandez (Arminia Bielefeld, Germany)
Benedict McCarthy (West Ham United, England)
Franklin Cale (Mamelodi Sundowns)
Innocent Mdledle (Mamelodi Sundowns)
Bryce Moon (PAOK, Greece)

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An emotional Diego Maradona says he was betrayed as Argentina coach by national team director Carlos Bilardo.
Carlos Alberto Parreira has left South Africa at the end of his contract with Bafana Bafana, headed for his home in Rio de Janeiro.
Ghana defender John Mensah has refuted claims of a spat with the Ghana Football Association over unpaid Soccer World Cup bonuses.
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