Mkhalele willing to release Chiefs players


Bafana Bafana assistant coach Helman will have no problem in releasing Kaizer Chiefs players included in the Cosafa Cup squad for their Caf Champions League duty.

Mkhalele has included three Chiefs players in his 20-man squad for the 2021 Cosafa Cup, which will begin on 7 July in Gqeberha, Port Elizabeth.

The players are: Happy Mashiane, Siyabonga Ngezana, and Bruce Bvuma, who performed heroics for ‘Amakhosi’ in their 1-0 win in Morrocco against Wydad Casablanca in the Caf Champions League semifinal first leg at the weekend.

Mkhalele, who will lead Bafana in the absence of newly-named coach Hugo Broos stated that these players could be replaced if Chiefs reach the final of the Caf Champions League.

“We have more players on standby just in case Chiefs proceed to the final, so we have players in place to fill in those gaps, not that we don’t wish Chiefs to go to the final, we want them in the final but now we will find ourselves in a situation whereby we have omitted Chiefs players,” said Mkhalele in a presser at Safa House on Tuesday.

South Africa have been drawn in Group A of the 20th edition of the tournament, alongside Botswana, Eswatini, and Lesotho.

“We have selected players based on our tactical plan that we want to apply, that is the main reason why we select players. So we felt that for our initial plan, we need these players, that’s why we included them but we have players that are there if Chiefs proceed to the final.”

The Confederation of African Football (Caf) chose Morocco (Casablanca) to host the 2020/21 Caf Champions League final on July 17 showpiece of African club football.  Chiefs have one foot in the final as they will take a one-goal lead into the home leg against Wydad on Saturday at FNB Stadium.

“For us right now we are in a position of saying that we will be communicating with players, requesting them and it will be up to the teams whether they want to release the players or not. If they refuse then we have to look for option B to select from the players that are on standby but definitely, I  believe that South Africa has a huge talent,” added Mkhalele.

“It is so difficult to communicate with players to tell them that you are on standby as with some players it might work positively and with some, it might work negatively. We felt that we keep the list [of standby players] within ourselves and when the time arrives then we will just be in contact with that particular player.

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By Tokelo Martin Mokhesi

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