Everton must release Pienaar

2008-01-08 00:00

World governing body Fifa have ordered Everton to release Steven Pienaar so he can join Bafana Bafana’s training camp for the African Nations Cup, but the midfielder had still not joined his team-mates in Durban yesterday.

Pienaar was one of only two players to have not joined the camp, with Israeli-based left-back Tsepo Masilela due to arrive this morning. Injured Mamelodi Sundowns right-back Vuyo Mere has been replaced by Bloemfontein Celtic’s Tumelo Nhlapo for the Nations Cup, which begins in Ghana on January 20.

Bafana team manager Sipho Nkumane said at a press conference in Durban yesterday that the technical staff had not heard from Pienaar, whose club manager, David Moyes, intended to use the midfielder in Everton’s League Cup semi-final against Chelsea tonight.

"He is supposed to have reported for camp on Sunday and there has never been an indication from his side [to the contrary], and the team [Everton] as well," Nkumane said.

Bafana coach Carlos Alberto Parreira said the team’s management had insisted on all South Africa’s foreign-based players being released for the training campin order to set a precedent.

"We are not going to allow any club to not release players. We respect the clubs’ rights and we want our rights to be respected," the coach said.

"We want to create a principle. The coaches have been spoken to directly, and it has been made very clear that we are not against the clubs, but also if we start releasing players we will not establish a principle.

"We are in the very serious position of preparing a host team for the World Cup."

Pienaar’s continued no-show, and a reported contractual dispute between the players and the SA Football Association were the pressing issues of the press conference.

Bafana captain Aaron Mokoena is reported to be brokering a truce between the players and the association, but when asked about this, Mokoena was gagged by Safa’s head of delegation, Mandla Mazibuko.

Pressed for a response, Mokoena only replied: "I have not signed a contract yet."

Bafana play friendly international warm-up matches against Mozambique on January 12 and Botswana on January 16 at Chatsworth Stadium.

Parreira reiterated that the Nations Cup will be a further building block towards putting together a competitive team for the 2010 World Cup.

"It is important to give a golden opportunity to the new players to show to themselves they are ready to represent the country.

"We have a lot of new players in this team, surrounded by the experience of the captain [Mokoena], Nasief [Morris] and [Sibusiso] Zuma, who give the younger players stability."

Asked if Bafana have a plan to counter the physical nature of Group D opponents — Angola, Tunisia and Senegal, Parreira replied: "It’s important to have a good physique, but football, thank God, is not a game of physique and power. We know in Brazil that it is a game of technique and skills, good discipline and organisation."

Bafana depart for Ghana on January 18.

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.