• Baxter calls up 10 uncapped players for Chan qualifiers

    Bafana Bafana coach Stuart Baxter Bafana Bafana coach Stuart Baxter

    Bafana Bafana head coach Stuart Baxter has named 10 uncapped players in his 23-man squad to face Botswana in the Chan qualifiers on 15 July.

    The South Africa national team are set to take on their neighbours Botswana in the first-leg at the Francistown Stadium on 15 July, with kick-off set for 15:30.

    The two sides will then travel to the Moruleng Stadium for the second-leg encounter on 22 July, with kick-off scheduled for 15:00.

    Baxter has retained nine players, who donned the Bafana Bafana jersey in the Cosafa Cup, including captain Lehlogonolo Masalesa, Tercious Malepe, Jamie Webber, Mario Booysen, Cole Alexander, Boalefa Pule, Riyaad Norodien, Sandile Mthethwa and Mothobi Mvala.

    “But I must say upfront that we have a slight challenge with Masalesa – because he was initially contracted to an overseas club he was not considered for selection,” Baxter said.

    “He has since become a free agent but now he is not attached to any team, which leaves a grey area as to whether he can play for us or not. We have consulted with the authorities and we should have an answer in no time.

    “He spent two weeks with us for the Cosafa Cup and he can add value to the Chan team, so if he is eligible to play we will gladly keep him in the squad but if not we will have to release him.

    “The rules are silent on that matter so we will have to wait and see, but we don’t want a situation where we take him with us, play him and then later on, we forfeit the game because we used an illegible player or even get a fine.”

    The 63-year-old called up Ryan Moon, Siyabonga Nhlapho, Gift Motupa, Siphiwe Mnguni and Sphelele Ntshangase to his squad for the qualifiers.

    “First of all, we would once again like to thank the clubs for agreeing to give us players when we called on them,” he added.

    “We are well aware that this qualifier comes at a time when most players are on holiday, or clubs have just returned for their pre-season training, and for that we are grateful.”

    In Baxter’s 23-man squad, he named 10 uncapped players, who are expected to debut for the national team during the Chan qualifiers, namely Moon, Mnguni, Hoffman, Kubheka, Modise, Sait, Mbule, Zuma, Lourenco and Mokoena.

    The winners in the clash between South Africa and Botswana will face the winners in the match between Swaziland and Zambia in the third round, which is scheduled for 11 and 18 August.

    Bafana Bafana squad for Chan:

    Goalkeepers:

    Boalefa Pule, Steven Hoffman and Khulekani Kubheka.

    Defenders:  

    Siyabonga Nhlapo, Malebogo Modise, Siphiwe Mnguni, Junaid Sait, Sandile Mthethwa, Mothobi Mvala, Mario Booysen and Tercious Malepe.

    Midfielders:

    Cole Alexander, Lehlogonolo Masalesa, Riyaad Norodien, Jamie Webber, Sphelele Ntshangase, Dumisani Zuma, Ricardo Lourenco, Teboho Mokoena and Sipho Mbule.

    Strikers: 

    Bongani Ntuli, Ryan Moon and Gift Motupa.

    This story originally appeared on SoccerClub.co.za

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