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Igesund keeps cards close to chest

South Africa coach Gordon Igesund said he will only reveal his squad for their Africa Cup of Nations clash with Cape Verde on matchday.

It has been evident that the pressure is on both the Bafana Bafana coach and the players to deliver, starting on Saturday in the first match of the 2013 AFCON.

However, Igesund believes that there is pressure on every national team to perform in this year’s continental tournament in Africa. Unlike what former manager Carlos Parreira did during the 2010 FIFA World Cup, Igesund said he won’t name a starting XI until the last minute.

“I won’t reveal my starting line-up until match day because I like to do it that way. It might be a little bit nervous (for the players) right up until kickoff you know, once you pass the first ball and the game is on,” Igesund said.

”They are professional football players and Cape Verde, England, Germany and Brazil are always nervous before the game starts and that’s human nature you know, it’s part of being a human being. I think we are not different to anybody else.”

Igesund, who holds a record of four league titles with four different teams in the Premier Soccer League, also said they haven’t set themselves any target of collecting a certain number of points in the first round of the tournament but emphasized the importance of winning their first match.

“We need to win every match to progress to the knockout stages but we haven’t set ourselves any target,” he said.

“I mean there are nine points on offer and if it means getting all nine points to qualify then we will do exactly that. However, the important thing right now is to win the first game against Cape Verde to ease the pressure on us and everything else will follow.”

Thu 17 January, 2013
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