SA are not afraid, says Parreira

2009-12-05 09:52

South Africa coach Carlos Alberto Parreira said the host nation was

not afraid of any of the teams it drew in Group A of the 2010 World Cup.

“We are going to play the ball on the ground,” Parreira said after

the draw in Cape Town Friday.

“We are going to prepare ourselves, we are not afraid. Mexico are a

good side, France have got players in the Champions League and they are good


Hosts South Africa, who will play Mexico on June 11 in the

tournament opener, were also drawn against two-time champions Uruguay.

Parreira, who guided his native Brazil to the 1994 World Cup title,

said his mission was to guide South Africa to the last 16.

South Africa are set to stage training camps in Brazil and Germany

as part of their preparations for the finals.

Former Bafana captain Neil Tovey said they had been drawn in a

tough group, but believed France were beatable.

“It’s a very, very tough group, but as the host nation we have to

qualify for the next round,” Tovey said.

“The opening match will be great. France had a tough campaign in

the qualifiers, but they have great players who can rise to the occasion.”

France qualified for the World Cup after beating Ireland in a

controversial play-off with a Thierry Henry handball leading to the decisive


Tovey said Mexico and Uruguay were also good sides.

“Mexico beat us last time at the Soccer Bowl, but now we will be

playing at home.”

The opening match will be played at the 90?000-seat Soccer City in

Johannesburg on June 11.

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