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Xenophobic Attack: South Africa National Team Players Released From Camp

The Xenophobia crisis-struck SA Football Association (Safa) amd have decided to release the Bafana Bafana players from camp after xenophobic attacks in the country destructed the national team’s preparations for the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying campaign.

The harsh decision was taken after Madagascar withdrew on Thursday from the international friendly match against Bafana which was scheduled to be played in Orlando Stadium in Soweto on Saturday.

Following this sudene cancellation, Safa, in an unprecedented move saw the country organisation call a 7pm media briefing, said they decided to release the squad after a meeting with the players and technical staff

“We want to reiterate that as Safa we totally condemn these acts of violence in respect of the xenophobic attacks on fellow Africans as well as the criminal looting of businesses,” said Jordaan at the briefing.

“Safa has consistently and strong condemned the xenophobic attacks and the wanton attacks of foreign nationals. We reiterate our call that these criminals must be arrested and dealt with harshly.

“We call on all footballers and sportspersons to join hands and unequivocally condemn any violation of the rights of fellow Africans in our country as well as xenophobic attacks."

In another event, Bafana were initially scheduled to play against Zambia in Lusaka but the Football Association of Zambia (Faz) called off the game on Tuesday as a result of the violence in South Africa.

It was made know to the media that the Zambians pulled out just as Bafana national team were finalising their travel arrangements to fly out to Lusaka.

Safa moved swiftly and a secured Madagascar as next opponents for Bafana. But reports revealed that the Indian Ocean islanders also pulled out at the eleventh hour as South Africa crumbles under the backlash from other African countries.

It is a chaotic begining for a new coach of the South Africa national team "Molefi Ntseki", obviously he was not pleased that after his first assignment was scuppered, albeit under circumstances beyond his and Safa’s control.

The cancellation of the fixture puts Ntseki and Bafana in a shaky position ahead of crucial back-to-back 2021 Africa Cup of Nations games against Ghana in Accra and at home against Sudan in November.

But all is not lost for Ntseki and his team.

Safa acting chief executive have confirmed that they are already in contact with potential opponents and the organisation will strive to secure opponents for the next coming Fifa sanctioned international friendly window from October 7 to 15 before the crucial November 2021 Afcon qualifiers.

“In October we have two opportunities to play two friendly matches. It is still some way but already we are speaking with some countries and we are trying to finalise,” said Paul.

“Hopefully over the next couple of days we will be able to release those fixtures.”

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