fast little loans
Gordon Igesund is set to hand out at least two new caps when Bafana Bafana face Brazil in Sao Paulo on Friday (Estadio Morumbi, kick-off 8.45pm SA time).
As the clouds that hung over the city for the past two days finally parted into glorious sunshine on Wednesday, Igesund gave a clear indication at the Palmeiras training ground of his tactical set up for the clash with the Selecao.
Maccabi Haifa striker Dino Ndlovu and Oldham Atheltic midfielder Dean Furman both appear likely to make their Bafana debuts in Igesund’s first ever national team starting line-up.
The Bafana coach is fast having to adapt to the transition from club coach to international coach, talking on Wednesday of cramming a week’s work into just the three days of training he has with Bafana.
He lined up his Bafana on Wednesday in what looked to be a 4-4-1-1 formation, Ajax Amsterdam’s Thulani Serero just behind main striker Ndlovu. Ndlovu only arrived in the country on Wednesday morning, but Igesund clearly likes what he has seen from the Israel-based marksman.
His hand may also be slightly forced by the fact that Benni McCarthy sat out training with a knock to his right calf, doing exercises on his own. The Orlando Pirates striker did not seem too concerned about the injury, but Igesund may well decide to start him on the bench.
Furman did not play in his one other Bafana call-up in 2008, under Joel Santana. But Igesund has been full of praise for the 24-year-old Oldham midfielder, who looks set to take his place in central midfield, alongside Kagiso Dikgacoi.
Matlaba has been used as a full- back by Orlando Pirates this season, but Igesund is keen to have him restored to his more regular position on the right wing. Siphiwe Tshabalala will operate, as usual, on the left.
In defence, Igesund has some difficulties because Bongani Khumalo was only expected in the country on Wednesday at lunchtime, with replacement right-back Siboniso Gaxa only due the evening.
If those two are in good condition, their experience will probably get them a start, given the quality of attack that Mano Menezes Brazil can bring to the table.
Siyabonga Sangweni should partner Khumalo in central defence, with Punch Masenamela in the left-back slot, and Itumeleng Khune keeping his place as Bafana No1.
Whatever side he fields, this will be a daunting task for Igesund and Bafana, facing the Brazilians on their own patch, up against a side containing talents like Neymar, Hulk and Leandro Damiao.
Bafana (possible, 4-4-1-1): Khune; Gaxa, Sangweni, Khumalo, Masenamela; Matlaba, Dikgacoi, Furman, Tshabalala; Serero; Ndlovu – The Star