Baxter to try lure players for COSAFA
Posted: 22 April 2018 Time: 13:00
Bafana Bafana coach Stuart Baxter has admitted there is a temptation to try get potential candidates for 2019 AFCON qualifiers to feature in the upcoming COSAFA Cup.
Baxter has been clear from the onset on what his aims are with the less-acclaimed COSAFA and CHAN tournaments are, with development taking centre stage given that they fall outside of the FIFA calendar.
The upcoming showpiece to be hosted in Limpopo, beginning May 27 until June 9, may prompt the British tactician to make an exception as he has one eye on the crucial fixture against Libya in September.
With FIFA windows presenting only 10 days to work with his squad, Baxter admits he may try and persuade potential candidates for the next competitive clash to pop into camp during the off-season.
“We have no time [in FIFA windows]. This is basically the only time we could have together before we kick off the AFCON qualifiers,” conceded Baxter.
“I may be able to persuade people to give me a little two-day training camp with a potential team, but I think we all know we won’t see many of the potential starters against Libya lining up in COSAFA – I think we would be dreaming if that were to happen.
“And that would not serve the purpose that we wanted really, but given that we won’t have a lot of preparation time, this has to be a multi-targeted event.
“We do have to try and say to them, ‘Listen, it’s worth coming to this; it’s worth allowing players to come to this because it maybe puts them in the running to be a Bafana player in the upcoming qualifiers.”
Bafana are currently second in Group E of the qualifying campaign, with three points from one game, while Libya sit top by virtue of a superior goal difference. Nigeria and Seychelles complete the group, with both nations having no points after the opening round of fixtures.