Five Kaizer Chiefs players have been selected for the South African Under-20 squad to face Kenya in an international friendly match on Saturday, 26 November (kick-off is at 15:00). They are Wiseman Meyiwa, Nkosingiphile Ngcobo, Itumeleng Shopane, Happy Mashiane and Given Thibedi.
“This is a great exposure for the guys,” Amakhosi’s reserve team coach Arthur Zwane comments. “I am sure that they will represent us with pride, as they are all talented.”
Meyiwa, Ngcobo and Shopane recently already participated in the national team’s ten-day training camp to prepare for the upcoming 2016 Cosafa Under-20 Cup. This tournament will be held in Rustenburg, North West Province, from 7 to 16 December.
Thibedi and Mashiane didn’t go to the training camp, but they will now get an opportunity to make South Africa’s final squad for the Cosafa Cup.
The Kenyan game is further preparation for Amajita to get ready for the Cosafa Cup.
Meyiwa represented South Africa last year at the Under-17 World Cup in Chile. “Wiseman is a physically strong player,” Chiefs’ reserve team coach Zwane says. “He is also an excellent distributor of the ball.”
The defensive midfielder has been in fine form for the young Glamour Boys in the MultiChoice Diski Challenge, starting in six of the seven matches played so far.
Ngcobo is a highly intelligent player, who reads the game well and is great in delivering defence splitting passes. “Nkosingiphile is a creator who doesn’t lose the ball,” Zwane sums up the qualities of the diminutive attacking midfielder.
Shopane is an explosive winger, who can also play as a striker. The 19-year-old has started in six MDC-matches. “He’s one of those players, who is excellent in taking his opponents on,” Zwane comments.
Thibedi and Mashiane are both wing-backs. “Given is a midfielder, who I use as a right-back, because he’s very offensive minded,” Zwane says, “while Happy is full of energy, going up and down the wing and delivering telling crosses into the box.”
Thibedi was already five times in the starting line-up of the reserve team this season, while Mashiane has mainly played for Chiefs in the SAB League.
South Africa will start the Cosafa Under-20 tournament against Lesotho on 7 December. Other countries in Amajita’s group are Swaziland and Botswana.
The Chiefs players will obviously try to impress South Africa’s Under-20 coach Thabo Senong in Saturday’s friendly against Kenya to be selected for the final squad for the Cosafa Cup.