Bafana to face world champs

By Drum Digital
25 October 2013

Spain will return to the stadium where they lifted the SWC in 2010 when they face Bafana Bafana in an international friendly match at Soccer City on November 19 .

"It is always fantastic to play the champions of the world, for us to play against this kind of competition is brilliant and it will give us an indication of where we are," Bafana coach Gordon Igesund said at the Sports Industry Summit in Johannesburg on Thursday.

"We played Brazil in my very first game in charge. That was fantastic for everybody. We lost 1-0 to them." The number-one team claimed the title as South Africa hosted the 2010 Fifa World Cup when they beat the Netherlands 1-0 in the final at Soccer City.

Bafana climbed seven places in the recent Fifa rankings, and Igesund believes his team deserves to play against the top teams in the world. "We deserve to play those kind of teams, but what is encouraging for us is that these teams are asking us to play against them. "They think highly of us, they want to be involved and they believe we will be worthy opponents to them. So that is very encouraging."

Igesund believes Bafana will be an unknown force to the Spanish, while his team has a better grasp on what to expect from the world champions. "We are going to have a very young team out there and it is always nice to play against the best in the world," he said. "They are going to learn from us and we are going to learn from them, but we are in a better position because we watch them play week in and week out, playing in the Spanish league."

The fixture was also announced by Bafana's opponents in a statement released by the Spanish football association (RFEF). "The RFEF wants in this way to thank the magnificent treatment on behalf of the sporting authorities and South African fans who received the Spanish team during the 2010 World Cup, in which the Spanish national team was proclaimed world champions for the first time," said a statement on the RFEF website.

The match will serve as preparation for Spain boss Vicente del Bosque ahead of the World Cup next year.Spain sealed their place in Brazil with wins over Belarus and Georgia earlier this month and will be one of the eight seeded sides for the draw on December 6.

-News 24

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