South Africa proved many of their critics wrong when they held Mexico to a 1-1 draw in the opening match of the tournament. Losing 3-0 to Uruguay in their next group match, the hosts had it all to do in their final game against former champions France.
Back-stabbings, divisions in the training camp and mutinies against Raymond Domenech all played against Les Bleus as they succumbed to a shock 2-1 loss. Despite winning, South Africa failed to progress through to the next round because of their inferior goal record.
However, impressive play from a number of the Bafana Bafana players attracted the attention of top European clubs.
Mamelodi Sundowns 25 year old star player Katlego Mphela may soon be playing in the EPL if his Birmingham deal succeeds. Speaking to reporters about his future, Katlego said that it was time he left the South African league.
“I’m focused now on going overseas,”
“I didn’t want to think about it during the World Cup, but now it becomes my focus.
“I don’t think I want to play (in the South African league) again … it’s time to move on.
“`I spoke to my manager yesterday and I understand Birmingham are still interested and want me to come over.
“We’ll just wait for the details to be sorted out as to when I will go over, but I don’t want to wait. I want to go now while I am in form and ready.”
Fellow team mate and Kazier Chiefs player Tshabalala has also attracted offers from English, German and French clubs with Wigan, Hannover and PSG particularly interested in services.
“I am a free agent so it is normal people being interested in me,”
“I think I have had a decent World Cup despite losing in the first round. The Kaiser Chiefs have been great to me but I want to play in Europe, so let’s wait and see.”
As was expected, the FIFA World Cup is the preferred hunting ground for some of the world’s biggest clubs and with every player keen on advancing their career, it should provide for some very interesting matches ahead.
Photo credit: from krmcguire