Kgaogelo Kegs Chauke Southampton 09 January 2020Getty

Bafana Bafana prospect Chauke: Safa defeat England in battle for Southampton midfielder?

  • Chauke has been on the English FA's radar
  • The gifted player arrived late in SA's camp
  • SA are scheduled to face Congo in U23 Afcon qualifiers

WHAT HAPPENED?: The 20-year-old midfielder, who holds dual citizenship in South Africa and England, has joined SA's under-23 camp and he looks set to make his international debut for his country of birth.

Chauke has been on the radar of the English FA having been called-up to the country's Under-18 national training camp in 2020 and there were doubts about whether he would honour his call-up to the SA U23 national team after he failed to arrive in camp on Sunday due to flight delays

However, Safa has now confirmed that the Pretoria-born player's arrival ahead of SA's two matches against Congo-Brazzaville in the 2023 U23 Afcon qualifiers. 

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THE BIGGER PICTURE: Chauke, who is currently on loan at English third tier side Exeter City, is most likely to feature for coach David Notoane's side against Congo.

The former Thatcham Town academy player would still be eligible to play for England if he does turn out for South Africa this month.

According to Fifa rules, a player is allowed to change nationality as long as they have only featured in three international fixtures, including qualifiers.

However, this excludes tournaments like the World Cup and the player must have been less than 21 years of age at the time of playing and can only switch after three years of no international activity. 

WHAT IS NEXT FOR CHAUKE?: The promising player and his SA U23 teammates will face Congo in the first-leg encounter at Dobsonville on Thursday.

They will then travel to Congo for the second-leg clash scheduled for Monday at Massamba-Debat Stadium. The winner on aggregate will qualify for the U23 Afcon finals scheduled to be hosted by Morocco in June.  

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