Goal has learnt that everything is not well between Kaizer Chiefs and Bafana Bafana at the moment, as both parties cannot agree on the release date of players from the club to the national team.
Bafana will assemble on Wednesday, May 29 which is exactly four days after the Nedbank Cup final between SuperSport United and Kaizer Chiefs.
However, the Bafana coach wants the South African-based players to report earlier than Thursday while the AmaKhosi coach Stuart Baxter feels that his player need more time to rest and recover.
An insider within the Chiefs camp has confirmed to Goal that there has been ongoing meetings between the national team coach Gordon Igesund and the Chiefs management including Baxter about the release of the players.
“Gordon Igesund was at the Village (Naturena) on Tuesday to have a meeting with the club management and coach Stuart Baxter was also there. Gordon wants the South African based players to report earlier in the camp, but that’s what the team want,” said an insider who asked to remain anonymous.
Baxter has apparently told Igesund about his plans for the upcoming season and requested the Bafana mentor to give his players a break, because Chiefs will be playing plenty of competitive football next season.
AmaKhosi will certainly be competing in the Caf Champions League after winning the PSL title and Chiefs want their players to have enough rest before the pre-season.
“Baxter claims that his players are fatigued and need to be given some time off. He refuses to let the players go earlier, because the pre-season will start earlier than last year to enable him to prepare for the Caf Champions League,” revealed our insider.
“Igesund agrees that players won’t perform to their level best if they are fatigued, but he said he needs all his best players to achieve his mandate, but Baxter doesn’t agree with that. No decision has been reached at the moment and the players are confused as we speak,” added an insider.
Kaizer Chiefs have eight of their regular players in the Bafana team and these players could only have less than a week to rest after the national team duty, as they will have to report back to their club for the pre-season camp.
Captain Itumeleng Khune, Tefu Mashamaite, Tsepo Masilela, Siboniso Gaxa, Eric Mathoho, Siphiwe Tshabalala, Reneilwe Letsholonyane and Bernard Parker will all be part of the Bafana team.
Bafana will play a warm-up match against Lesotho on June 4, before travelling to Yaounde in Cameroon to face Central African Republic on June 8. They will then fly to Addis Ababa to play against Ethiopia in the 2014 World Cup qualifier matches.
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