Bafana Bafana head coach Stuart Baxter has announced a 30-man provisional squad to play in the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations scheduled for Egypt from 21 June – 19 July.
It will be hosted by Egypt, after Cameroon was stripped the rights to host the showpiece.
The squad has a lot of experience with a touch of youth about it.
Baxter will trim his squad on the 12th of May before they depart for their pre-tournament training camp.
The final list must be with CAF 10 days before the first match.
“This was the most difficult exercise we had to undertake with my assistant Molefi Ntseki – just putting down 30 players on the list was very difficult as there are many who have been left out that we feel could have made it – but then again, it is impossible to accommodate everyone,” said Baxter.
Baxter has also added two new faces, overseas-based defenders Nikola Tavares and Joel Unteresee from Crystal Palace (England) and FC Zurich (Switzerland) respectively.
The duo is still working on their South African passports and will join camp once they have been sorted out.
Two new faces in the squad are Fortune Makaringe of Maritzburg United and Ben Motshwari of Orlando Pirates – both did not feature in the qualifying campaign, together with Kermit Erasmus of Cape Town, who also got a recall.
Bafana have been drawn in Group D against Morocco, Ivory Coast and fellow COSAFA member Namibia.
They open their AFCON campaign with a clash against Ivory Coast on Monday, 24 June, followed by Namibia on Friday, 28 June. In the last group stages match, Bafana Bafana will take on Morocco on Monday, 1 July.
“If we go to the AFCON with the mentality that they don’t think we are good, then let’s show them we are. All I want from the players is to give everything they have, do the best they can and I have a strong belief that we will grow stronger with every match,” added Baxter.
“I am confidence we can go past the group stages, and when we do, then the Bafana Bafana team will take it’s own life.”
All their matches will played at the Al Salam Stadium in Cairo, Egypt.
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