Zuma Visits Bafana
13 May 2009
|Bafana Bafana received a timely boost on Saturday, (13 May) when President of South Africa Jacob Zuma visited the team to wish them luck for the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup which starts tomorrow, (Sunday 14 June).
Wearing a yellow home Bafana Bafana jersey with his name jersey Number 1 on the back, Zuma met the team just before their final training session before the start of the tournament. Starting with the coach and captain, he went around shaking hands with the players, technical staff and the backroom staff.
â€śI am here to give you my support and to tell you that the whole country is behind you, don't focus on what the critics have been saying; just play your game and make the country proud because we have confidence in youâ€ť; said Zuma.
The number one citizen of the country went on to say that he will be at Ellis Park tomorrow (Sunday) when South Africa play their opening match against Iraq.
Zuma revealed to the whole squad that he brought along some Madiba magic,' yesterday when I was on my way from Cape Town I visited Nelson Madiba and spent about an hour with him. I told him that I will be visiting you guys today, and he said please tell them I am too old to visit but they have my support and seeing that I can't come to the stadium I will be watching the match on television,â€ť said the President.
Zuma also told the players that they have as huge a responsibility as he has,â€ť the people out there want the team to win at all costs, they want nothing else and like me when a councilor fails to do his job its my name that is mentioned, but just go out there and do your best,â€ť said Zuma.
In response, captain Aaron Mokoena reminded Zuma that the last time the president visited the team Bafana Bafana went on to beat Equitorial Guinea,â€ť We are glad you came here to give us your support, all I can say is that on behalf of the boys we will not let the country down, we will do our best,â€ť said Mokoena.
Mokoena then handed Zuma the green away Bafana Bafana with the President's name on the back and number 1 inscribed on the back before the president and the players burst into song and dance signing the famous â€śUmshini wamiâ€ť song, led by the President.
South Africa faces Iraq tomorrow, before taking on New Zealand on Wednesday in Rustenburg and Spain in Bloemfontein next Sunday.