Thabo Senong explains early camp for Amajita ahead of AFCON qualifiers
Posted: 6 July 2018 Time: 14:15
Amajita coach Thabo Senong has explained the decision to play a friendly ahead of their crucial Under-20 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier later this month.
The men’s national U-20 side have assembled in Johannesburg, from where they will depart for Lusaka on Friday to face Zambia in a practice match on Sunday.
Amajita are approaching the final hurdle in their quest to reach the 2019 AFCON finals to be hosted in Niger between February and March next year, with a two-legged clash against Malawi scheduled for next Saturday and the following weekend.
However, Senong deemed a friendly bout with familiar foes was necessary to get the boys back into the swing of things due to the recent off-season break.
“The challenge has been the off-season. We are well aware that most of our boys haven’t been playing regular football mainly because of that,” Senong told SAFA.net.
“We wanted to help aid that. We want them fit and that’s why we decided to organise this friendly match against Zambia.”
Senong is also aware that some individuals plying their trade for the bigger clubs locally as well as abroad may have had superior pre-season training to others, but feels humility is key to their task and thus all have been invited to parttake in the friendly this weekend.
“We are happy with the fact that some of our boys are at the advanced training phase with their respective clubs,” Senong added.
“That’s very crucial for the development of any player. However, we also stressed that success must always go hand in hand with humility. That’s key.”
The Bafana Bafana assistant coach has named a strong squad for the upcoming qualifiers, with the likes of Lyle Foster, Keith Groeneveld and Wiseman Meyiwa on his list of 26 players.
Goalkeepers: Khulekani Kubeheka, Glen Baartjies (both Mamelodi Sundowns)
Defenders: Thabo Moloisane, Malebogo Modise (both Mamelodi Sundowns), Njabulo Blom, Thabo Mokoena (both Kaizer Chiefs), Givemore Khupe, Bradley Cross (both Bidvest Wits), Sibusiso Mabiliso (AmaZulu), Reece Vetter (Randburg FC), Keith Groeneveld (Standard Liege, Belgium)
Midfielders: Siphesihle Mkhize, Promise Mkhuma (both Mamelodi Sundowns), Nkosingiphile Ngcobo, Wiseman Meyiwa (both Kaizer Chiefs), Mfanafikile Dlamini (Golden Arrows), Duncan Adonis (Cape Town City), Tashreeq Matthews (Ajax Cape Town), Kobamelo Kodisang (Bidvest Wits), Khanyisile Mayo (SuperSport United), Jesse Donn (Ubuntu FC), Keagan Mitchell (Black Aces)
Forward: Shungu Dutiro (Bidvest Wits), Lyle Foster, Thabiso Monyane (both Orlando Pirates)