David Notoane hopes clubs will release their player,s after calling-up a 29-member provisional squad ahead of the South Africa Under-23 side’s quest to qualify for the Under-23 Caf Africa Cup of Nations, to be held in Morocco next year.
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The SA Under-23 team will play Togo in the second round of the qualifiers later this month, but Notoane has some challenges in getting the players he wants since the junior Afcon qualifiers don’t fall in with the official Fifa calendar.
Having recently held a 10-day camp with the players to assess the squad, Notoane says the recent team he called up is a continuation of the camp held at the South African Football Association (Safa) technical centre.
“The squad we selected is a continuation of the camp we had previously in preparation for this official qualifying Round Two match against Togo,” Notoane told Safa.neet.
“So now you see players like Thapelo Maseko and Keagan Johannes coming into contention, hoping that, of course, with the match being outside of the Fifa calendar, we will receive support from the clubs,”
“One understands that the programme is going to be intense for a lot of the clubs after the Fifa week, and the demand for bigger squads will be there.
“But we are … negotiating with the various clubs to see how we can meet each other halfway to make sure that we have got the strongest final selection to represent South Africa, and help our cause to qualify for a third successive Afcon tournament, and also push to qualify for a third successive Olympic Games.
”Notoane further revealed that he has done his homework on their opponents and the final squad will be picked based on players they believe can go up against Togo.
“We have seen Togo, we have got footage of their games against Mauritania in the first round last month. We are analysing their matches as we speak and the final 23-man squad will be informed by the players who are suited to the challenge that Togo will present for us in terms of this qualifying match.”