JOHANNESBURG – There may be just 36 days until the Fifa Women’s World Cup in France but it’s a no-brainer that rookies South Africa must assemble the best squad instead of only the best players.
Banyana Banyana will have a mountain to climb in their maiden World Cup and they’ll need real soldiers for a Group B campaign against China, Germany and Spain.
“We’ll take the best players and best group,” coach Desiree Ellis said. “We want to make sure that when we leave (for France), we do not only have the best players but the best group.”
Banyana assembled for their final preparations on home soil at the University of Johannesburg's Soweto Campus this week, sharpening up for their last tune-up match against world champions the USA on May 12 at Levi's Stadium in California.
“We have an idea of 80 percent or so of the players (going to France), but we cannot discount players raising their hands,” Ellis said. “Training matches is where you want players to play. Yes, we’ve got most of the players but there’s one or two places up for grabs and it’s important we give those players a proper chance, making sure we don’t take (only) the best players but the best group.”