Danny Jordaan promises free Bafana tickets to vaccinated fans for Ethiopia qualifier

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Bongokhuhle Hlongwane of South Africa celebrates scoring. (Photo by Lefty Shivambu/Gallo Images)
Bongokhuhle Hlongwane of South Africa celebrates scoring. (Photo by Lefty Shivambu/Gallo Images)

South African Football Association (SAFA) president Danny Jordaan promised free tickets to Bafana Bafana's next FIFA World Cup qualifier at home against Ethiopia next month to vaccinated football supporters.

Should the government finally give sport the green light to accommodate fans in stadiums again, some Bafana fans could gain free entry into the qualifier scheduled for 10 October.

Hugo Broos' Bafana are the talk of the town after beating Ghana 1-0 in their second qualifier on Monday, which gave them four points after two games, including a 0-0 draw against neighbours Zimbabwe.

Bafana top Group G followed by Ghana (3), Ethiopia (3) and Zimbabwe (1) with home and away leg double-headers against the Walya Antelopes during the next international window.

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Speaking at a Department of Sport, Arts and Culture "return to play" Covid vaccination initiative launch at FNB Stadium on Wednesday, Jordaan sounded the clarion call about the need to get fans back in stands.

"When we look at what happened in Europe, why is it that the Euro finals had 60 000 people in the stadium, fans celebrating before, during and after the match, hug and embrace each other?" he said.

"Depending on our agreement with the [sports] minister and how many fans we have in the match against Ethiopia, we are going to give 50% of the tickets freely to fans who can prove to medical officers that they are vaccinated.

"We want to thank government and we totally support this initiative, and we have to get our nation vaccinated."

Various high-ranking government officials such as deputy president David Mabuza and sports minister Nathi Mthethwa, and sports administrators like FIFA secretary-general Fatma Samoura and SA Rugby president Mark Alexander, plus numerous sports stars attended the launch.

Jordaan also questioned people who were resistant to the vaccine, saying it was the solution the world's been waiting for since the Covid-19 outbreak.

"When Covid first arrived, all the epidemiologists and medical scientists were looking for a solution, which was let's all get vaccinated," said Jordaan.

"And then we question the solution … it's very clear that, if you're unvaccinated, you can't come to the stadium.

"We want you to come to the stadium. We don't want you to go to the hospital."

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