Igesund gives three days to win selection
Gordon Igesund says Bafana Bafana squad members have got just three days to show him what they are capable of, and that he will make his final squad selection on December 30, even though this is some 10 days before the deadline.
A preliminary squad of 32 players team will assemble in Johannesburg on December 27 for three days of intensive training after which Igesund will name his 23-man squad for the tournament.
They will play two matches per day over the three days to allow Igesund to run his eye over players who are returning from injury or new to the set-up.
“(Ayanda) Patosi, (Thulani) Serero, Katlego Mphela and others must show me in these three days that they can perform at the Nations Cup,” Igesund said after his home-based side beat Malawi 3-1 at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban on Saturday.
Igesund plans mini matches to look at all the players during the three days of workouts at the Rand Stadium in Johannesburg and then says he will “have to make some tough decisions”.
“I need to have my 23 selected by the end of the year so that when we reconvene in Cape Town on January 2 we can begin the serious work. It is important that we mould the team into a unit and I have to do in 18 days what would ordinarily take four to five months to do,” Igesund added.
“I believe in my ability to do it and I’m not swaying on my principle,” he said in response to a question about whether he should not delay his final selection until the Confederation of African Football deadline of January 9.
“I’ve got to select and team and go for it. I might make a mistake and we might find out about it after wards but I must make a decision.”