Bafana Bafana

Mahlambi's Bafana withdrawal due to mental health not alcohol

Phakamani Mahlambi (Gallo Images)
Phakamani Mahlambi (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Bafana Bafana's COSAFA Cup coach David Notoane says Phakamani Mahlambi's withdrawal was related to poor mental health and not alcohol intoxication.

Mahlambi was withdrawn from the squad earlier in the week and initial reports suggested the Mamelodi Sundowns forward had been drunk from imbibing alcohol.

However, Notoane has since clarified the reports and indicated that the 21-year-old is not in a good mental state and this caused his withdrawal from the squad.

He said: "Look I don't know what issues you talk about. For starters, I don't want the team to be distracted by what has been put out there.

"The reality of the Mahlambi situation is that his father requested that the player be released from the camp due to personal issues.

"Mahlambi also spoke to me about his issue and we had to make sure we don't risk anything in terms of using a player who is not in a good state of mind.

"We had to check with our doctors and see if he could continue playing but unfortunately they felt he's not in a good state to contribute in a positive way in the squad.

"This also gives us an opportunity to see this team without Mahlambi. This camp also a chance to look at new faces in our youth setup. We had to look at the positive side and hopefully, he will sort out his issue at home and be in a good state of mind to join Sundowns during pre-season."

Bafana Bafana are set to face Botswana in a COSAFA Cup quarter-final on Sunday.

Kick-off is 15:00 at the Princess Magogo Stadium in Durban.

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