Pienaar ready to ‘dig deep and work hard’

2012-06-16 18:55

Bafana captain wants to win Afcon and go to Brazil

Bafana Bafana captain Steven Pienaar wants to create his own history during his tenure as the team leader.

Pienaar wants to emulate Neil Tovey by lifting next year’s Africa Cup of Nations and be the player that takes the country to the 2014 Fifa World Cup finals in Brazil.

Pienaar believes Bafana can take a leaf out of Zambia’s book and work hard to win the continental showpiece when the country hosts it in January.

“Afcon is a great platform for the team to put the country back on the map and with the players we have I have no doubt that we can challenge for the title if we play in one spirit,” Pienaar said.

“Sometimes when you have a difficult spell you need to pull up your sleeves, digdeep and work hard – sometimes we lack that element of getting stuck in there.”

Pienaar said Bafana’s performance on Friday impressed him, with the team showing a will to fight and win.

“It was good to finally win a game but at one stage I thought it would be the same old story as we were creating but missing our chances.”

Pienaar said the team has been under tremendous pressure of late because of their inability to win games.

“But for us we knew the boat was not sinking yet. Sometimes when the wind blows the boat will swerve but at least we were not losing games.”

He is leaving tomorrow to sort out his future at Tottenham Hotspur.

After a successful loan spell at his former club Everton, Pienaar will report back to Spurs’ pre-season training next month.

Yesterday Pienaar took time out to grace a tournament where he grew up in Westbury in Johannesburg.

With the departure of Harry Redknapp at Spurs, Pienaar expects to have talks with the yet-to-be-named successor.

Pienaar believes a change of managers will not affect him.

“Changing managers is part of the game but I knew that I would have to go back. I will hear what the new manager wants and if I am part of his plans or not and will take it from there,” said Pienaar.

With his former manager David Moyes linked with the vacant position, Pienaar said “it would be good for the club but not for the Everton supporters”.

Pienaar also revealed that he would like to end his career in The Netherlands in five years’ time but is also not ruling out a return to South Africa.

“The PSL has become more competitive and is getting better every year but it is a decision I will make in five years’ time.”

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